It's time to think about this truth: Are we His sheep?
I shall not want.
Oh really? Then why are we always wanting, seeking more? 'Are we His Sheep?'
He makes us lie down in green pastures so that He can restore our souls.
Sometimes (whether we like it or not), "He leads us on right paths for His Name's sake," just so that we are restored, disciplined, purified, and set back on straight paths again.
Think of your lifestyle. What pastures do you graze in? How are you setting yourself up to be preyed upon by sheep in wolves clothing?
Suggestion: make a list of your daily activities and note what brings you peace and contentment. Note what brings you aggravation, stress, guilt, and anger. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you the truth.
My sheep know My Voice.
He leads us beside still waters so we are not swept away in a frenzy of fast running streams and opinions. Whose voices are we listening to - our peers or just the people we find ourselves associating with? The people around us can lead us astray if we are not careful.
What thrills do we seek for excitement and pleasure, taking risks that could potentially take lives? It's time to wise up, dear beloved of God.
He prepares a meal for us in the sight of our enemies.
Do we come to His side and eat only from the meals He prepares for us? Are our enemies those who tempt us to seek to be fed elsewhere? How often do we overindulge or snack on unhealthy foods that can slowly lead to the destruction of our bodies?
Does eating food that can eventually weaken and burden our bodies break the commandment of thou shall not kill? If so, we will not enter into His rest.
He anoints our heads with oil.
The Lord is our Shepherd, and a good shepherd covers his sheep's head with oil to protect it from pests and being snagged in thorny bushes. This practice is a daily routine for the good of the sheep.
Are we coming daily to be touched by His Hand, as we come daily to His side? Do we cover ourselves with His Word and graces to protect us as we go through our daily lives?
Our cup overflows.
What does your daily life overflow with? What habits, emotional struggles, or negative thoughts? Listing these habits and praying for guidance allows us to begin choosing the lifestyle of a sheep. A sheep remains calmly and trustingly at the Shepherd's side, longing for His touch and comfort. A sheep know that, no matter what, if he ever strays, he will be found.
Once I asked God, "Could I ever stray so far from you that I could not come back?"
Along with a resounding "NO" heard within me, an image came to my mind of a Shepherd's staff and crook snatching me back from dangerous ledges and cliffs.
When we submit to the Lord's Will - when we trust in the Lord with all our hearts - then surely Goodness and Mercy shall follow us all the days of our lives, and we will dwell in the House of the Lord Forever. Amen.