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Weekly Devotion | The Lord of Psalm 23

This devotional is based on Brian Chesemore's sermon, The Lord of Psalm 23, given on January 19, 2016.

 

Day 1: God’s Faithfulness to Restore | Psalm 23:1-3a

Quotes/References:

  • “The unwavering faithfulness of the Lord calls for my absolute trust in him. To reflect deeply on the faithfulness of the Lord in this Psalm challenges us to be like David and gain a personal trust that knows no bounds, a personal trust that is able to declare,' Whatever life may throw my way, I will not throw away my confidence in the Lord—my Lord—who is faithful in every season.'” Brian Chesemore
  • “This passage isn’t merely counseling us towards an experience of restoration, it’s counseling us towards the Shepherd who restores. It’s counseling us to one who is able and willing, and who knows our need.” Brian Chesemore

Questions to Consider:

  • What acts of God’s faithfulness have meant the most to you? How can they strengthen your confidence in God today?
  • David’s metaphorical reflections reveal how deeply attentive and gracious he believed God to be. How does his conclusion compare with your own reflections? What about God’s character could you study more in order to strengthen your confidence in God?

Prayer recommendations:

  • Read Ezekiel 34:11-16. Notice how personal God is toward his sheep. He loves us and is fully committed to our good. Pray that God would open your eyes today and show you more examples of his profound faithfulness towards you.
  • Read John 10:11-16. The reason that we can have confidence in God’s faithfulness towards us is because of Jesus. His blood legitimizes our eternal confidence in God as our Father! Praise God that we have such a faithful shepherd! He is the source of all our joy!

 

Day 2: God’s Faithfulness to Lead | Psalm 23:3b

Quotes/References:

  • “The Word is his tool to awaken us to our need and the Word is his tool to restore. Sin makes us dull. It makes us stupid to the beauties of God and the wisdom of his ways. We need our Shepherd’s penetrating voice on a daily basis to break in, to awaken us to our need for him, and to his overwhelming grace.” Brian Chesemore
  • “When he leads us in paths of righteousness he only ever leads us in accordance with his character, with his name, which is Faithful.” Brian Chesemore

Questions to Consider:

  • God’s commitment to our welfare is not ultimately based on his love for us (though He certainly does love us). Rather it’s based on his deeper commitment to be true to his own perfect character. How is this reason is an even greater cause for our joy and gratitude?
  • Are you currently looking for restoration? From sins? enemies? circumstances? While God, our faithful Shepherd, is fully committed to restoring us, our restoration often times requires our obedience to God’s Word in a specific way? What might this look like for your situation?

Prayer recommendations:

  • John 15:9-11. Our Shepherd’s calls to obedience are intended for our greatest joy! It is through obeying Jesus that we experience life as God intended it to be abundantly lived (John 10:10)! Ask God to help you better connect obedience with overflowing joy.

 

Day 3: God’s Faithfulness to Protect | Psalm 23:4

Quotes/References:

  • “It is not that he is closer in the valley, but that in the valley we realize how close he has always been.” Dale Ralph Davis
  • “His staff is that instrument that he uses to lovingly press us forward. His rod is that instrument that he swings violently against wild beasts that get too close. Here’s what we need to know about our Savior in the valley, he is absolutely committed to whomping anything that would seek to harm your soul and your life.” Brian Chesemore

Questions to Consider:

  • In our study of Job we learned that we can have peace even in the worst circumstances because God is bigger than those realities. He is not intimidated by them. He overshadows even the shadow of death! His strength, love, and power are so great that we can walk with peace, even courage. How does it strengthen your soul for your current circumstances, when you remember this God is near to you?
  • Read Romans 8:38-39. What (or should I say “who”) is the ultimate reason why God’s love and presence can never be separated from us? Who then is the source of our greatest confidence?

Prayer recommendations:

  • Read Exodus 15:13. This verse is part of the song that the Israelites sang after God had drowned Pharaoh’s army in the Red Sea. Our God is a warrior! He defended his people then, and he defends them now. Ask God to show you the ways in which he is already protecting you.

 

Day 4: God’s Faithfulness to Lavish | Psalm 23:5-6a

Quotes/References:

  • “The Lord is not shaken by your enemies, and his presence puts them in their place.” Brian Chesemore
  • “If we can trust him to lavish his care upon us in the face of our enemies, we can trust him in anything.” Brian Chesemore

Questions to Consider:

  • Every Christian is tempted to embrace fear, anger, or panic during protracted trials, but by God’s grace we don’t have to be imprisoned by them. Instead, God invites us to “feast” on himself. Even in the midst of hostility God makes himself fully available for the enjoyment of his children!
  • What are your biggest concerns or fears in the midst of hostile situations or relationships? What about God can you “feast” on to nourish your soul in these times?

Prayer recommendations:

  • Read Jeremiah 17:7. While its true that God’s people should look ahead to the joys after their seasons of suffering, Christians need not wait to taste and celebrate the abundant goodness of God! By meditating on His character, we tap into the ultimate source of joy which can never be taken from us! Ask that God would help fix your mind him, that your joy may be full and secure.
  • John 15:1-5. Jesus is the reason why we get to enjoy God in the first place. If not for him, we would be forever separated from an infinitely wonderful God. Praise God that we have a clear and certain means of knowing just how good he is. The example and sacrifice of Jesus, our Vine!

 

Day 5: God’s Faithfulness to Lead us Home | Psalm 23:6b

Quotes/References:

  • “This celebration in Psalm 23 is simply a foretaste. These times of being cared for by our Lord Jesus Christ, they all anticipate that day when we can sit down at his table once for all and we can feast upon the presence of the Lord and enjoy him to the full. And that celebration has no end!” Brian Chesemore

Questions to Consider:

  • The final state of every believer is rest. No more running, no more enduring, no more enemies. Rest. What does David indicate is the most desirable thing about that rest? Rather than all the riches and rewards that await him after death, why would this be what David longs for the most?
  • Read Revelation 21:3. Who is speaking? Does it give you greater confidence in your suffering by knowing that God is eagerly looking forward to setting up his Kingdom with you forever?

Prayer recommendations:

  • Read Psalm 27:4. Ask that God would open your eyes to see and long for his beauty, like David did.
  • Read John 17:24. Immanuel, “God with Us,” proclaims how deeply he longs for his disciples to be with him. Praise God! Our God is not one who reluctantly and simply endures us. He is a God who is so eager to be with us, and for us to be with him, that he names his own son Immanuel!