Psalm 23 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
How can my mind be so totally blank when it’s so full of everything around me? The leafless trees shivering in the bleak rain mist, no clear patches in the heavy sky. Crows are sitting on the fence scouting the yard for scraps, quiet and eerie.
I think how contentedly small my world is. With the trees now bare I can see the top of the ridge we live on from where I’m sitting. I know it like the back of my hand. I’ve walked that small trail many times while pondering life. I’ve meandered while reflecting. I’ve strode to ward off anger. I’ve sat in leaves and wept. I’ve breathed in deeply of the scents only the woods can offer. I’ve walked in the utter silence of snow fall. The peace that brings infuses my heart with an odd sort of ache. When the wind blows in my face and into my nostrils I wonder, is this what Adam felt when God breathed him into life? I wish the ridge of woods was mine, I’d protect them forever. Is it strange that I want to wrap my arms around it all and hold it close in my heart? I want the sounds and smell permanently carved in my memory.
Out of nowhere my mind conjures up thoughts of my unknown future. Other than death will age bring a time when I can’t walk to the crest of my little mountain? Or see it? Or smell it? The serpent of anxious “what if” slithers in to steal my bliss, my breath…if I allow it.
“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?”
(Luke 12:25,26 NIV)
“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. For each day has enough trouble of its own”
(Matthew 6:34 NIV)
I repeat these verses to myself often. Even still nameless figments enter my green pasture and stir my still waters. I constantly seek restoration from Him who restores. I seek help with keeping my foot to the path He’s laid out for me. I try not to fear the evil lurking in the shadows, knowing He goes before me, and will be with me to the end. I have the promise that my enemy will be defeated. God’s mighty hand has tenderly anointed my head with oil, claiming me as His own.
Though we prepare for a lengthy life on earth it’s not guaranteed. I can’t let the thief of peace steal my here and now blessings. When I finish this writing I’ve no idea how my future will unfold. But at the last keystroke I will resolve to set my sights on my worry free eternal dwelling. I will be joyful that I’m being cared for now, and will be for all of my forever!
Perhaps at the edge of that pasture,
A lovely small wood will reside,
Perhaps I shall ask of the Master
If in them I may abide.
Perhaps the still waters quench the trees thirst
As I know they will gentle mine,
Perhaps at my end, with roots submersed
I’ll reside by the bank for all time.
Perhaps at each days gloaming,
He’ll accept the worship I bring,
Perhaps He will grant me the longing,
To tend to the woods of the King.