The LORD is my shepherd. That’s it. That’s the whole deal, isn’t it? With Him as the shepherd (providing we get off our dead horses and other home-made power plants we obsess about) what more is there? You need more support for this little statement? some convincing? some performance stats, some customer reviews of this LORD? The rest of this little Psalm really is just overhead…description, really, because it’s all right there in the first five words. The rest is just what it’s gonna be like. Want? so “over,” isn’t it? wanting, desiring, politicking, manuevering, promotioning…all over and done with. All that fear of future, all that jockeying for plain old self-worth, that gritting it up for revenge, that getting mine…no more space for any of that rattling around up in the cranial cavities, down in the bones, clouding up the senses. It is all over, for He is with me through…whatever. It’s all there in that little preposition…with.
Lolling in green pastures or scraping through valleys where death lurks–no matter which or where or what, there’s nothing to fear. Go ahead, make a list of your fears, then cross them all off, burn ‘em up, or just give ‘em up to your Shepherd. He’s the leader, the advocate, the protector, the source of identity and worth and future, the caterer of food and drink and pleasure–already spread out for you. In short, the way, the only Way. Always a home, your home, ‘cause He guarantees it, this Shepherd, this LORD of yours.
1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. 3 He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. 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. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever.