MY Shepherd

“The LORD is my shepherd; I have all that I need.”

Psalm 23:1

Charles Spurgeon wrote extensively about the 23rd Psalm and said the key word to understanding why this psalm is the most popular of all the Old Testament writings is understanding how deeply personal it is to the believer. It is to the Old Testament equivalent of what Romans 8 is to the New Testament. Shepherding was considered one of the lowliest occupations a person could hold and was most often relegated to the youngest sibling in the family.

David himself was the youngest of eight, a shepherd who gives us a glimpse into the heart of Jesus Christ, our Good Shepherd. The apostle Paul writes in Philippians 2 that our Good Shepherd humbled himself to the point of becoming a man and who loved us and who gave His own life to save His sheep. As psalm 23 unfolds we get a glimpse into the mind of our own Good Shepherd by taking to heart all that David pens in six short verses seeing himself as one of the sheep.  

Though we may have wants in this life when we realize Jesus is all we need our wants become fewer and fewer as the Lord satisfies and like the tribe of Levi we begin to comprehend our greatest allotment in this life is the Lord Himself. Being led of the Lord brings us peace as He leads us to green grass where we can lie down and find rest for our weary souls.

In this life we all face dark days where we feel hemmed in all sides. It’s here the Lord reminds us He will never leave us nor will He forsake us. Actually the Lord does the opposite of leaving us. He draws even closer to us in our times of trouble and leads us in the way of righteousness meaning He leads us to Himself. Oh how comforting it is to know that the Lord is right there by our side every step of the way. David understands the favor we enjoy as the sheep of His pasture and that we are immortal until our Good Shepherd says otherwise as evidenced by the fact that even our enemies stand at bay unable to lay a hand upon us as the Lord Himself prepares a feast in their very presence. Goodness and mercy follow us all the days of our lives because of who He is, the Good Shepherd.

Psalm 23 ends with a glorious reminder that because we can say the Lord is “MY” Shepherd all that Jesus declared in John 14 is true, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.”

The point is this. What David understood and what the Lord wants you and me to know today is heaven isn’t so much a destination as it is a person, a relationship. When you read Psalm 23 from now on read it through the lens, “The Lord is MY Shepherd” and you will know what David knew too, God is with you. In six short verses we are reminded He loves you, He provides for you, He protects you and is preparing a place for you! 

“I am the good shepherd; I know my own sheep, and they know me, just as my Father knows me and I know the Father. So I sacrifice my life for the sheep.”

John 10:14–15


Michael Osthimer





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