23 The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
3 He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name's sake.
4 Yea, 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 runs over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever.
Some of us come from rough childhoods and thinking about God as a Father isn't so great. He's also known as the Shepherd. Somehow a man who takes care of sheep and protects them from wolves seems pretty wonderful. This is my favorite Psalm. I had a really terrible job a year ago. I memorized this Psalm and thought of it every night, before I went to sleep. It's so visual I could imagine the sheep, and the green pastures. The valley of the shadow of death was my 3 hour commute through heavy traffic. I also appreciated the rod and staff verse. It used to make me cringe, but I really needed to keep my mouth shut and watch what I said at work. So I'd pray, "let your rod and staff comfort me and keep me from saying things that will make things worse."