May 24 - People of Abundance, Part 1
Psalm 23 is well-known to many people, even to those who aren’t familiar with other passages from the Bible. The hazard of a verse being so common to us is that we assume we know all there is to know about it. That prevents us from investing time into studying it and meditating on what it actually means to us. Greg has just started a new series which focuses on the 23rd Psalm and I hope it will reveal new aspects to these beautiful verses that we may have never noticed before.
Psalm 23:1-3 (NLT)
The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name.
We live in a culture that bombards us with a message of scarcity. It tells us our house isn’t big enough, our car is too slow, our kids aren’t going to the right schools, our shoes aren’t the right brand. If you allow this message to rule your life, you will always feel you don’t have enough. You will compare yourself with others, feeling jealous because of what you don’t have and wanting to impress people with what you do have. If that’s your focus, where does God fit in?
Those of us who memorized this passage as a child may remember the King James Version which says “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” I shall not want, I have all that I need, I lack nothing. No matter which version you read, you get a picture of a God who provides completely for his children. The same God who provided manna daily for His people in the wilderness is the same God who sustains you each day.
Greg introduced us to the Hebrew word “dayenu,” which means “it would have been enough.” It’s the idea that had God only given us one thing, it would have been enough. Because we are undeserving of anything from God, had He sacrificed His son for our sins and never done anything for us again, that would have been enough. But not only did He send His son to save us, but then he just kept giving. He has provided for each of us in different ways, but each one reveals the abundance with which he gives. Our health, our homes, our church, our family, our daily bread. We have done nothing to earn it, yet He continues to shower us with His goodness.
And He’s not done! As followers of Christ, we have faith that He will continue to bless us abundantly, so we can anticipate what comes next with gratitude. If you struggle to feel confident in this, dig into the Word and get to know the character of God. Then you can have complete faith and trust that He wants to bless us lavishly. In your prayers this week, thank God for everything He has yet to give you. Why wait to see what it’s going to be? Be thankful now! It’s coming from your Heavenly Father. I promise, when the time comes for Him to give it to you, it’ll have been worth the wait.