The Good Road

1The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. 2He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. 3He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. 4Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever. —Psalm 23:1-6

Have you ever noticed that the path you are on looks nothing like the one you started on at the beginning of your life? Sometimes the journey has led you places of great joy, but many times the journey leads to a place of pain and death. You may ask, “How did I get here?” Our immediate thought when life is hard is we made a poor decision. So we ask, “Where did I go wrong?” If you are walking with Christ, it’s possible you didn’t go wrong. [mjn1] And if you did, God can redeem every decision we make, if we let Him.

Psalm 23 is not about three different places; it is about a journey through and to them. David began in the comfort of the pasture, but found himself in the valley of the shadow of death. However, he is still traveling the same path. Though he felt the world crowding in and his enemies seeking to devour him, David looked down at his feet and saw a path of righteousness.

When life is hard, we must know that it was not just “us” who got there; it was God who allowed it or led us there. God is not surprised and nothing we do can compromise His will. Though God chooses the hard things in life to form us into His likeness, we always have His protection when we are on the path of righteousness, living in Him, and following His ways. There is nothing to fear because we have the comfort of knowing where we are is God’s plan. However difficult, He can redeem it!

When we sit at the table of our enemies and face their demonic banter, we have nothing to fear, for we drink from a cup that overflows with goodness and mercy. Remember, though we may be in “enemy territory,” it is all God’s. They can do their worse, but their worst cannot pry away the rod of the Shepherd who protects us.

Though our journey began in the comfort of a pasture, and led us to the switchbacks of this dark world, we know what waits at the top of the mountain. The dwelling place of the Lord! When you feel lost, look at your path, and know that though it is hard it is essential, for it is the path God is using to guide you to His sin-free home forever.—John Cox

Journal

“The Lord is my Shepherd I shall not want.”What are the “sinful wants” of my life that tempt me to step off the path of righteousness?

What was the hardest time of my life and what righteousness did God produce through it?

Prayer- Father, may I never forget Your guiding hand when I feel the attacks of this world. Protect me from the siren call of sin as it tempts me to step off the path You have given me to walk. May its hardness not cause me to forget the goodness You give me today and the eternal joy that awaits me forever. For it is Your plan to guide me through the earthly pain to live in Your eternal pleasure. Amen.


 [mjn1]Hmmm – is this true? I am walking with Christ and I am perfectly capable of going wrong and often do. Do you think we need to re-write this a bit? Maybe…

If you are walking with Christ, it’s possible that you didn’t go wrong. And, if you did, God can redeem …

Always True: 5 Great and Precious Promises of God
Always True: 5 Great and Precious Promises of God 

5 CD Series Set - $35.00

What if you believed—truly believed with all confidence that God is with you? How would today go for you if you knew without a doubt that God is in control? What would be different in your life if you were sure God is watching and good? What would you risk if you were certain God is victorious? 

Just how would believing God’s promises change your life?  

Ask the greatest Christian you’ll ever meet if they hold on to God’s promises and they’ll all say yes. Believing that God will do what He promises leads to a great life. The greatest Christian you’ll every meet knows, treasures, and is resting in the promises of God. They cling to these assurances that God gives His people so they can walk by faith while they wait for Him to work.

So what exactly does God promise?  In this topical study of what will always be true, Pastor James MacDonald will explore five great and precious promises that God keeps. Enter into this study with anticipation and faith that the God who makes these promises is faithful and true... always true.