Visualizing ourselves as the Lord’s sheep in lush green pastures gives us a feeling of peace and contentment. Few images convey this concept of peace like sheep lying down beside quiet waters, with their legs tucked under them, chewing their cud. They only lie down, after they have eaten, and then they relax, ruminate, and enjoy their meal a second time. However, they will not lie down if they are nervous or frightened, relaxing only when they feel secure, at peace, and content.
“[W]e are His people, the sheep of His pasture” (Psalm 100:3c). Our Good Shepherd gives us a sense of belonging; He knows all about us and calls each of us by name.
Over the table by the chair where I have my devotions each day hangs a beautifully woven life-like tapestry of my Good Shepherd, entitled: “Lost No More.” He is seated with His flock in the background while two sheep are especially near Him. One is resting peacefully and contentedly at His feet, and the other sheep has drawn near for contact with his Master’s hand. Sometimes I find myself needing His gentle touch, while at other times I’m content to snuggle close at His feet.
This poem by Helen Steiner Rice captures our sentiment so well:
THERE’S PEACE AND CALM IN THE TWENTY-THIRD PSALM
With the Lord as your Shepherd
You have all that you need,
For if you follow in His footsteps
Wherever He may lead,
He will guard and guide and keep you
In His loving, watchful care,
And when traveling in dark valleys,
Your Shepherd will be there . . .
His goodness is unfailing,
His kindness knows no end,
For the Lord is a Good Shepherd
On whom you can depend . . .
So, when your heart is troubled,
You’ll find quiet, peace, and calm
If you’ll open up your Bible and
Just read this treasured psalm. –Helen Steiner Rice
Because the Lord is our Shepherd, we have everything we need. We’re so loved and blessed—led, provided for, protected, comforted, and content in His care.