“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.”
Along with the Christmas story in Luke, these are perhaps the most familiar words in the Bible. People who have never opened a copy of Hebrew or Christian scripture are nonetheless familiar with the 23rd Psalm.
The 23rd Psalm is not analyzed and written about nearly as often as less familiar passages. There’s no need. It’s as if the power lies not in the meaning, not even in the words, but in the very sounds. Certainly most of us felt its peace and promise as very young children, before we fully understood what the words meant. We knew how they sounded, and that was enough.
It is even more joyful, more comforting to turn to the 23rd Psalm today, from a new perspective and understanding.
The Lord is my shepherd. The word “Lord” in the Hebrew Bible, like “Christ” in the New Testament, evokes the Presence and Power of God in my being. My own divine Beingness is my shepherd, my guide, my constant, loving Truth. It guides me where I need to be. It eases my fears and challenges. It restores me to my sense of myself as an expression of the Allness of God in the Universe.
Today I surrender completely to the Presence of God that is my own Beingness, restoring me to peace, joy and love.