Monday, October 18, 2010

“He Leadeth Me Beside Still Waters…” What Did David Denote?

Psalms 23 describes the trust that David had in the lord as his Sheppard and protector. In verse 1 of this Psalm he says the “the lord is my Sheppard- I shall not want.” David begins the verse 2 with “he maketh me to lie down in green pastures…” My focus of this Psalm lies in the latter part of verse 2.

Most people like me just read this verse casually-understanding it as old English translations. Or we hear it being read at funerals. We know that David loves God and acknowledges his power and protection through out this Psalm; but something happened to me one day in service that caused this verse to jump out at me for the first this time.

Sometimes things seem to be moving slow in our lives-if at all. It seems like our situations have come to a standstill-at least to the human eye. It doesn’t appear that we are being spiritually attacked because things seem quiet at the moment-yet we don’t know what is lurking beneath the motionlessness of our situation.

Why did David use the adjective “still” to describe the waters? What did he intend for us to understand by “still waters.” He could have used running, flowing, rising, rivers, oceans, etc. I know from my limited experience around water , that in “still waters” we really don’t know what is lurking underneath. Alligators can lay motionless in still waters waiting to attack. Other parasites that are little and invisible to the eye above sea level lay placid as well-perhaps waiting to attack.

So David knew that God was there to protect and guide even when things seem calm, peaceful or appear to be okay. I believe that David wanted to remind us that God is ever so present to depend on even when the obvious is not what it seems. A Sheppard doesn’t just protect his sheep from the clear and present dangers, but the unusual and unseen to the sheep’s eye also.

David also states in the verse that he leads me beside the still waters, not through or around. Webster defines “besides” as being next to or along side of. I believe David knew that we don’t have to go through or around still waters or a still situations in our lives to get eaten up or be destroyed-as if we have gone through a fire.

When we are beside danger, we are close enough to be engulfed by it-albeit not being able to see the full scope of the danger we are near. Also there could be blessings once we get pass the still waters so we have to be lead in an orderly fashion in order to receive those blessings.

The lord God almighty is my Sheppard and I shall not want for anything. If we forgot after reading about Job’s experience, David reminded us in the Psalms. If that was not soul stirring enough, Jesus exuded the power and presence of God-because he always wanted to and followed God’s pilot.
I have heard people say that the verses of the bible can never become redundant-there is always something new to experience. I would have never thought Psalms 23:2 would be that verse for me-it seemed like the shortness of this psalm made it straightforward and easy to understand the depth of David’s declaration.

So if it can happen for me, I know it can happen for you-God revealed his everlasting love for me in a way that was so sublime and quiet. Just like David was dear to God’s heart, Jesus reminds us that God’s heart is waiting for you to pull on those heart strings as well
You just have to OPEN YOUR BIBLE to get it and see it. Our duty is to help others magnify the beauty of God within.

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