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"He makes me lie down in green pastures" (Psalm 23:2).
The farm fields and pastures near our home are a vibrant green during this season especially. I enjoy the peaceful view of sheep, along with their lambs, feeding in the green pastures.
By far my favorite farm scent is freshly cut alfalfa. Yesterday we drove by a large field of alfalfa around the corner of our house and I told my friend Jesse I sure wanted to be there when they cut and harvest it. When Brooksyne and I married nearly thirty years ago I supplemented our income by working for farmers during hay season. I put up hay and sure enjoyed it when we did alfalfa. It has a distinct sweet smell. Although I've never tasted it I recall a farmer from Missouri telling me that alfalfa is like a prime cut of beef steak to cattle (an interesting analogy in light of where beef steak comes from!)
David, of course, was a shepherd prior to his reign as the king of Israel. Probably the most beloved Psalm he authored is the 23rd. It is in this Psalm that David draws from his background and makes the analogy of the Lord being his Shepherd. Consider through the ages, for approximately 3,000 years, how often this particular Psalm has brought assurance, restoration and comfort to God's people!
But today I focus on just one phrase in the Shepherd's Psalm. "He makes me to lie down in green pastures." Picture a lush green pasture with tall green grass; an abundance of food that God designed the sheep to flourish on.
God has blessed all His redeemed with an abundance of "green pasture." Now surely we live under varying conditions of temporal prosperity and blessing. Some have more, others less; some have life better, some far more challenging. We so often tend to equate this with the degree of God's blessing and focus on what we lack rather than what we are blessed by. Indeed some readers are surely in the midst of a severe trial even as you read this today and the pasture just may not seem very green.
But spiritually green pasture always abounds for the child of God. His pasture is never in drought or depletion.
Consider these timeless Scripture promises.
• He meets all our needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19).
• Through His divine power we have everything we need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3).
• I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly (John 10:10).
• From the fullness of His grace we have all received one blessing after another (John 1:16).
• Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ (Ephesians 1:3).
Today let us rejoice in the green pasture that our loving Lord has abundantly provided for His children!
Be encouraged today,
Stephen C. Weber
Brooksyne's prayer: Lord, You care for me just as the shepherd cares for his lamb. You provide for all my needs. You restore my soul by Your refreshing Word and guide me in making the right choices that bring honor to Your name. When my soul is troubled or overshadowed by the wrenching pain of loss Your peace replaces my fear. Knowing that Your presence is with me at all times helps me to face the future. You have poured Your cup of goodness and mercy into my life causing me to overflow with endless praise to You, my Great Shepherd. Truly I declare, how great is our God!
Today's song of praise
"How Great Is Our God" Audio Video
The photo I use today is a morning view from our home. This is not a current photo, as the field is planted in corn this year and the photo shows soybeans. But I use it because it shows the striking beauty of the lush green we see in our area. The alfalfa fields I mentioned are around the corner from my home just past my Amish neighbors.
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission; and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and I make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and to prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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