In this sacred season of Eastertide on the Church Calendar, Christians deliberately spotlight on what new life is and how it can bring transformation from fearing adversity to believing God through the adversity; from wondering where the heck my needs are going to be met to trusting in God’s willingness to provide; from worrying about the future to resting in the present. Psalm 23 is just the right message for both the season and our world circumstances of pandemic and hardship.
Because of the psalm’s familiarity, some might only associate it with funerals and miss its relevance for the here-and-now. That would be quite unfortunate because this is a beautiful poem of trust which is prescient for us to face the vicissitudes of faith and life on this earth and be able to rest in the field of God’s benevolent kingdom.
Therefore, I am offering here my contemporary version of this most famous of psalms for the Church:
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 more than 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. Amen.
Click The Lord’s My Shepherd by Stuart Townsend as we find rest for our souls.