This is one of those days where sacred time needs to break into secular time and transform it. April 15, as all Americans are quite aware, is tax day. Those procrastinating souls who have hoped for the return of the Lord before this date are now faced with the reality of secular time. But in this sacred season of Eastertide, a focus on new life can bring a transformation from fear to faith, from fretting to resting. Psalm 23 is just the right message for this time. Yet, because of its familiarity, we might only associate it with funerals and miss its relevance for now. So, the following is my contemporized version of this most famous of psalms:
Jesus is my pastor, and I lack absolutely nothing because of it.
My merciful overseer is watching me while I rest secure on a nice soft bed of grace;
he leads me into an unhurried life; he is thawing out my cold anxious soul.
He leads me in all the right ways for the sake of his great name.
Even though I get lost and find myself in a dark alley,
I really have no fear of evil;
for I know God is with me,
his Word and Sacrament – they are sufficient to comfort me.
I have a big ol’ appetite and hunger for you, God,
and you satisfy it,
even though I have enemies within arm’s length;
you encourage my mind with joyous thoughts,
so that my heart overflows with hope.
I am quite sure that goodness and mercy will follow me for a lifetime,
and I will live in peace despite any adverse circumstances my whole life long.