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Psalm 23 Reflections

Psalm 23:6

Surely your goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

Look over the floorplan of this house.  If you could sit with Jesus in one of these rooms, which would it be? Why?

Write your name in the room you have chosen, imagining what it would be like for you and Jesus to hang out together in that room.  

Find a seat nearby to pray. While picturing the two of you together in that room, express your gratitude for the goodness and mercy He has shown you.

 

Psalm 23:5b

You anoint my head with oil;

My cup overflows.

As a symbol of God’s abundant Spirit poured into you, pour water into the glass to the point of overflowing.  

What unique work has God anointed you to do? 

How could the Spirit overflow from your life

and be a blessing to others?

 

Psalm 23:5a

You prepare a table before me

In the presence of my enemies.

Take a seat at the table.

Is there someone you are at odds with?

Look at the chair reserved for “your enemy.”  What feelings rise within you as you imagine what it would be like to share a meal with that particular person?

How does this experience change when you notice that God is at the table with you, too?

 

Psalm 23:4

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.

What are your greatest fears and concerns 

at this moment?

What challenges do you face by walking through this dark time as opposed to trying to walk around it?

As a reminder of God’s presence in your life, light a candle and place it in the sand. How does God’s light comfort you as you walk through this valley?

Maybe God has put someone on your heart – a family member or friend who is walking through a dark valley. How can you be a light in the darkness of their valley?

 

Psalm 23:3b

He leads me in paths of righteousness 

for his name’s sake. 

Are you facing a decision that is like a fork in the road?

One path takes you down the road of personal ambition and self-orientation.  The other path travels the way of Christ — of personal sacrifice leading to closeness with God and others.

Take a slow stroll down both paths. Reflect on choices and actions that end up separating you from God and others. Then reflect on choices and actions that bring you close to God.  

In the end, we cannot actually fulfill ourselves based on mere personal ambition. It leads to a dead end. We find our true lives in healthy community and in a continual relationship with God. It is never too late to turn around and take the other path.

In giving ourselves to God, we find our true lives. This path lead on forever.

Welcome to your eternal life.

Welcome to EVERYTHING.

Psalm 23:3a

He restores my soul. 

The Psalm 23 metaphor for “restore” is the resetting of a broken bone.

What within you is broken and in need of the Great Physician to reset, to restore?  

While reflecting on these items designed to promote physical restoration, call on God to restore your soul.  

How might this season of Thanksgiving, Advent and Christmas become a journey of healing?

 

Psalm 23:2

He makes me lie down in green pastures. 

He leads me beside still waters.

This upcoming season is known for parties and an abundance of rich food.  

God leads us to places where we can receive 

spiritual nourishment.

In a word or phrase, write on a paper plate how you will seek Spiritual nourishment throughout this upcoming holiday season. i.e. – listening to worship music on my commute to work, praying in the evening with my family, download a daily devotional on “gratitude,” etc…..

Offer a brief prayer, asking God to increase your appetite for more of Him in your life.

 

Psalm 23:1

The Lord is my Shepherd; I lack nothing. 

Holiday commercials and marketing often lead us into a mindset of deprivation and dissatisfaction. God offers us freedom from that mindset, and an opportunity to live in and enjoy the abundance He provides. 

Reflect on your deep beliefs about God’s provision.

What behavior accompanies a life of gratitude? 

Has a particular longing or desire become greater than your love and longing for God? 

As a confessional prayer, write whatever that may be in the blank on one of the cards on the table. 

Close by praying this simple prayer: 

My Shepherd, how has my desire for lesser things 

overshadowed my desire for You? 

Increase my desire for You.