As we look at the final verse of Psalm 23 it becomes clear that as we follow Jesus anxiety and complaining are to give way to confidence and gratitude.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever. (Psalms 23:6)
David’s confidence in God’s care dissipates the anxiety that arises from the real troubles in his life.
Similarly, in the Sermon on the Mount Jesus commands his followers not to worry.
"So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them." (Matthew 6:31–32)
Eating, drinking, and staying clothed are pretty basic needs, yet Jesus says not to worry even about these.
Scholar and pastor N. T. Wright comments:
"When Jesus told his followers not to worry about tomorrow, we must assume he led them by example. He seems to have had the skill of living totally in the present, giving attention totally to the present task, celebrating the goodness of God here and now. If that’s not a recipe for happiness, I don’t know what is.” — N. T. Wright, For Everyone: Bible Study Guides: Matthew
Celebrating the goodness of God — that is Psalm 23 through and through. It is as if Jesus internalized Psalm 23, and drew strength from it in his life and ministry.
Jesus’ strength can become our strength. Spend some time in Psalm 23 again today!
Lord Jesus, help me to accept your shepherding again today, that I may more and more have confidence in you. Amen.
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Pastor Mark loves his wife and grown children, the Word of God, and words. And coffee, chocolate chip cookies, Apple products, small video projects, and the New England Patriots.