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There Is Nothing I Want More


shepherd1

(Here we are!  Day one of our “one verse at a time” look at Psalm 23.  Our journey through a passage of peace, promise and the presence of God Himself.  Thanks for walking with me. Walks with friends are so much better. Wonder what we’ll find?)

“The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.”

That’s the version of Psalm 23:1 that many of us memorized when we were young.

And all I can think is, “The Lord IS my Shepherd, BUT I STILL WANT.”

I want lots of things.

– I want peace of mind.

– I want to live closer to my kids.

– I want all of my long distance friends and family to live close enough to grab a cup of coffee and bare our souls.

– I want a cabin.

– I want to lose 10 pounds.

And at this very moment I want a venti skinny caramel macchiato.  Really badly.

We’re only on day one, and already I’m struggling with my own reality’s contrast to this famous verse.

“The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.”

Hmmmmmmm….

Maybe my idea of want and God’s idea of want are two different things.

So I’m doing a little research.

Here is what I discover about the word ‘want’.

The archaic meaning, the original Hebrew word that David used in this Psalm, was חָסֵר (ḥaser), which means “to have need, be lacking, and to fail.”

Okay.  Well, that changes things.

“The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not ‘have need, be lacking, fail.’ “

(interesting that these three things are what I fear most… “need, lacking, failure”)

In my mind, I want to tack another word on the front of the verse that makes it click into place for me.

“BECAUSE the Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not ‘have need, be lacking, fail.'”

David was a shepherd for part of his career.  He knew all that he personally did for his sheep.

He made sure that they were “lacking for nothing”, that they were never “wanting” for anything they needed.

He protected them.  He made sure they were fed.  He kept track of them.  Tended to them when they were hurt. Picked them up and carried them when they fell.

Essentially gave his life for them by putting himself in their little sheep world, fighting off their enemies.

He knew each of them and went after any that went astray.

His job was to take care of His sheep.

Sound like Anyone else we know? 🙂

David’s analogy of the Lord being his Shepherd was personal.  Intimate.  

David faced many enemies in his lifetime.  He knew more grief and difficulty than we will ever experience.

But he knew beyond the shadow of a doubt that he was safe within the care of his Shepherd.  That, regardless of his circumstances, he would not be lacking anything he needed, physically, spiritually, emotionally.

He was in the presence of his Everything.  His Protector.  Provider.  Healer.  Friend.

“BECAUSE the Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not ‘have need, be lacking, fail.'”

Every. Single. Day.

Whether you are having the best day or the most horrific day of your life, your Shepherd is always there.

 – Protecting

 – Nourishing

 – Providing

 – Tending to

 – Loving

 – Fighting for

YOU.

ME.

And when I step back and see Jesus as David did, even with my distorted, modern day definition of the word ‘want’, I can honestly say,

There is nothing I WANT more.

The presence of my very good, very attentive, very wise, very loving Shepherd is enough.

I shall not have need, be lacking, fail.

THE LORD IS MY SHEPHERD.

TRUTH.

JESUS, please help us grasp this today.  Soak our minds with this tiny little verse that is filled with such meaning and immense hope.

Remind us.  Constantly.  We will forget. That YOU REALLY ARE OUR SHEPHERD.  THE SUPPLIER OF EVERY NEED. THE UNDERSTANDER OF EVERY CIRCUMSTANCE.  THE COMPANION IN EVERY DIFFICULTY.  THE PROTECTOR OF OUR MINDS, OUR HEARTS, OUR BODIES, OUR SOULS.

Help us to remind each other.

Show us how to recognize that OUR ONLY TRUE NEED IS YOU, WHERE EVERYTHING WE NEED IS FOUND THROUGH YOUR PERSON, YOUR PROVISION.

**Bonus verse – Philippians 4:19 – And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.

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