Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Lord is my Shepherd

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.He restores my soul.He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake.Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil,for you are with me; your rod and your staff,they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Psalm 23

" You know that you are getting close to God, when the devil starts working overtime." My mother has often spoken these words to me when unexplained things happened. Now I find them saying this to myself and to my family. We have had a few rough days, nothing that we won't survive, but rough days none the less. Like the remnants of this hurricane crawling up the East Coast, it seems that evil and destruction are swirling around and the air is so dense we cannot see ahead at all. The water is rising, the sump pump died and the wind and rain persists. Sometimes bailing isn't enough. And sometimes there is nothing one can do but live through it.

Today, I want to remember all those who are suffering loss, all those whose bodies are failing, all those who feel like the tide is rising over them. It was a day like today for which David wrote Psalm 23. He knew what it was to be a good shepherd, and he also knew, in his limitations, that he had to rely completely on God. He was a small sheep, lost without the direction and call of God, caught in the brambles, feeling like he was about to be someone's dinner. It was for days like this that he wrote. And God, who holds us all tenderly and calls us each by name, is in the midst of the rising storm, riding the waves with us and leading us to safe harbor. Today, may we pray that God shows abundant love and sends angels to all those who are trapped with the water rising. May we remember that each of us is precious to the Loving Shepherd, the one who lays down his life that we might all live.

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