Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Psalm 23:6

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
 -Andy Gleiser

Why have we studied Psalm 23? Because you need to know Jesus. He doesn't want your manufactured relationship or even the appearance of worship. He wants you. He wants you like a sheep bragging on and loving your Shepherd. The sheep end this song by telling the future. You can trust your Shepherd completely because he is a faithful God. 
The Shepherd has made a promise to you for as long as you live on this earth. His promise is that his goodness and mercy will follow you. It's like you have two shadows who are with you 24/7. God's goodness and steadfast love are with you when you sleep and when you wake. They are with you in the car and in the house. They don't leave you when you're at school or at work. You can find them just behind you in a crowd or when you're alone. When you're elated or broken, when you're right with God or away from God, when you're walking with God or running from him, his goodness and steadfast love are trailing you.
God's unwavering love and unfailing goodness shadow you all the days of your life…the good days and the bad days. Is your heart hurting? Are you discouraged? Broken? Fearful? You are the object of his love. You are never alone. 
How can you be so sure of his constant goodness and love? The Shepherd was abandoned by God so you would never be abandoned. Only Jesus knows the loss of goodness and love because he took your punishment on the cross. When you struggle to trust God's goodness and love in your darkness, remember that he endured that darkness alone. You are never alone in the darkness. Just look behind you! God's goodness and steadfast love are right there!
But the Shepherd has also promised you will live with him forever. The best part of salvation is not that you escape hell or get your sins forgiven (all incredible blessings!). The best part of salvation is that you get God! You get him not just for the years of time alone, but you get him for eternity. 
Psalm 23 thrills our hearts as sheep, but all he does for us in the psalm is for our time on earth. The psalm ends with, "The best is yet to come!" A day is coming when Jesus will make all things right. There will be no more sickness, pain, or broken hearts. The last child will have been abused. The last family will have been torn by war. The last person will have been ravaged by cancer. It is your destiny to dwell in the house of the Shepherd forever…and you're closer today than you were yesterday.

Food for thought: Rejoice that your Shepherd became a Lamb so his sheep would never be alone.