“He makes me lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside still waters…”. (Psalm 23:2)
I recently heard Dallas Willard speak on the 23rd Psalm and I was surprised to learn that sheep won’t lie down and rest until they have eaten their fill and quenched their thirst! Until then, they wander about in search of food and drink! This really spoke to me as I can relate to that thirst of soul and the interior restlessness it causes that drives me to find something that will fill it and still it! A burger, a tv show, an iphone, a project, and sooner or later, it finally occurs to me that this kind of thirst can only be quenched by the Spirit.
When I read scripture, there are times when the Word seems to enter the room where I sit and become a drink of living water, particularly on days when I agree to sit still and unhurried. I am thirsty for God but so often don’t even know it! I wander around trying to “fill-up” with temporal things and end up living “dried up” instead.
I am forever grateful that the Good Shepherd always keeps track of me, keeps calling me to drink from his rivers of delight and faithfully helps me find rest in His green pastures. But, I must agree to take a deep breath once in a while, listen for His voice and let Him quench my thirst with His presence. The soul finds rest in God alone — He is our green pastures and peaceful, still waters.
Prayer of Response:
“Thank you, Jesus, for being my Good Shepherd. Help me to hear your voice and find the way to your springs of living water! Remind me to slow down and breathe in your presence, and let you fill my soul. Amen.”
—Submitted by Judy Villanueva
Judy lives with her husband in Colorado, near the kids and grands. She completed her masters at Fuller Theological Seminary, is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Spiritual Director, and writer. Her Bible reflections can be found at listeningforlove.net)