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)
It can be challenging to find peace in our modern age. We are rushed off our feet with work and study, family and church, and a million other things which drain our time and energy. Our society is geared toward constant activity, often leading us into constant tiredness.
This reality is something which I have already felt, especially in the last year—the time demands of study and work together with church, as well as my family and social life got extensive at times—not to mention moving across the country! But through all of this busyness, one of the many things which the Lord has been teaching me is the importance of taking time to be with Him; to pray and talk to Him about my heart and life; its struggles and its joys.
The well-known words of Psalm 23 really capture for me the sense of peace that comes from knowing that my cares and worries are carried by the Lord—“Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil…”. In Christ, we know that no matter how bad things get, He is always guiding us. This means through the busyness of life in 2017, we can always find peace and rest in Him.
Now, I’m not particularly great at this yet—I easily get distracted from my time with God, and I often find that I am thoroughly worn out by the time I get to my devotional in the evening or I find that I haven’t spent much time in prayer throughout the day. But I am slowly learning to intentionally spend time finding rest in God, to refocus on Who and what my life is really about. And in 2017 I invite you to join me on that journey; to find space amid the bustle of your life to spend time alone with the Lord—“He leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul…”.
And we also have the reassurance that this peace and restoration we find in Christ is not temporary—“Surely your goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever”. What a great promise that is! What a great reminder that no matter how busy and stressed we get, the peace that we can find in the Lord is a taste of what is in store for all of eternity.