Psalm 23:1-4, "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters, He restores my soul. He guides 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."
Did you know that more people have died from taking selfies than shark attacks? From 2011 to 2017, 259 people lost their lives because they weren't paying attention and tumbled backward. Interestingly, sheep are known to make this same treacherous mistake. Unaware of the danger, they can wander off a cliff and the entire herd will follow. Needless to say, sheep need a shepherd – and so do we!
The Bible says that like sheep, we've all strayed from God's path. Doing life on our own has put us in harm's way. Lost and alone, we miss out on a life of true purpose and an eternity in heaven. But, if we place our faith in Jesus, He becomes our Good Shepherd. With staff in hand, Jesus guides, protects, provides, corrects, and comforts His followers. Even in our most frightful moments, those times when we feel lost and alone, He is saying, "Don't be afraid. Follow Me."
Is Jesus your shepherd? Have you experienced the comfort of His love? No matter what you've done or where you've been, He wants to be your Good Shepherd! And when you belong to Jesus, you'll know His voice as He guides you in paths of righteousness and someday welcomes you by name in heaven!
Spend a few moments reflecting on specific times when you felt Jesus' guidance, protection, provision, or presence. Journal anything specific that comes to mind. Then, consider what those times would have been like if you'd had to face them on your own.
Lord Jesus, You are my Good Shepherd. You've protected me from harm, given me purpose, and led me in paths of righteousness. In my pain, You've comforted me, and in my fear, You've filled my heart with peace. In You, I am confident, capable, and complete. Thank you! Amen.