Listen To His Voice

Greetings, church family
 
Welcome to our “separated together” adventure.  During this time I want to help you connect with the Lord daily so that when it is all over, our faith will be stronger and our fears will be weaker.Did you know? During Nazi Germany’s march across France, some 80,000 French people died, not from bullets, but from fear (heart attacks and such). Fear weakens your immune system. On the other hand, “a cheerful heart is good medicine” Proverbs 17:22.
 
Scripture for today
I hope you’ll let Psalm 23 help you to have a cheerful heart today. Read the Psalm out loud, and then let me encourage you with it:
A psalm of David
The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
– Psalm 23:1-6
 
King David, in a moment when he needed God the most, realized that he wasn’t alone in what he was facing.  He was guided by the caring hand of his Shepherd, the Lord.  Throughout the day, God did all sorts of things for him, and for you.  The first one was: He made David lie down in green pastures.  Sheep are, by nature, fearful creatures. As they move into a new grazing area, they’re concerned with potential predators there.  Before the Shepherd ever moves His sheep to a new area, He goes before them, filling in gopher holes where they might twist an ankle, smoothing out dangerous places, and setting guards to ward off wolves.  God has done that already for you today. Before you woke up, He prepared your pasture.  I encourage you to stay in that pasture with Him today.
 
For many of us, that means staying away from other people so that we don’t become infected, and then agents of infection.  For our nurses and healthcare workers, it means venturing out to care for sick people – spending time in what verse 4 calls “the darkest valley.”
 
The critical piece for every promise in this Psalm is the fourth word in the sentence: “The Lord is my shepherd.”  Let the Lord be your shepherd today.
 
Listen to His voice, while also doing your best to heed the safety directives of our government.  Don’t saturate your mind with the news, which can make you fearful and sad.
 
Listen to His voice!
 
You may be in isolation, but you are not alone. He is with you.  Stay near to Him today, and stay six feet away from people outside of your family circle.
 
Prayer for today
Father, thank you for being my Shepherd today.
I am listening for Your voice. I will walk in the pasture You have prepared for me.
Help me to find joy in this situation, which I have never been in before.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.