By: Liz La Voie
I’m a city girl who loves the country (as long as there’s a Target and coffee shop within 30 miles). I love the scenery and the slower pace of life, but if I’m honest, my heart is prone to wander just like sheep without a shepherd. It’s tempting to focus on what I lack than to be grateful or content, like going without wifi or hot water for more than a day. I may get agitated and start thinking I know best or that life is better elsewhere.
This was a common occurrence when I moved to Mexico as a teenger. My usual comforts and conveniences weren’t as reliable or accessible. I didn’t grow up speaking the language so I encountered a language barrier on top of common teenage challenges like insecurities and friendships.
But during this very lonely season of life, I came to know a very significant Biblical principle personally and deeply — God shepherds his people. I spent hours daily playing guitar, singing, and praying on my bedroom floor. I began studying the Bible and relating to the exiles of the Old Testament. I began to learn and believe that God’s plan for my life was good even though it may seem gloomy. He is the Good Shepherd. It was this truth that saved me and sustains me.
What does ‘shepherding’ mean? The Lord provides care like a shepherd cares for the sheep. The shepherd knows what’s best for the sheep. In Psalm 23, we read that the Lord leads His people first to green pastures, a place of sustenance. Then, he leads them to streams of water, a place of rest.
Where do we see examples of God shepherding his people?
In Exodus 13, the Lord went ahead of the Israelites and He guided them during the day with a pillar of cloud, and he provided light at night with a pillar of fire.
In Exodus 16, God provided manna to the people of Israel and met their physical needs that foreshadowed Jesus, the true bread of life.
In John 10, Jesus directly states that He is the great shepherd who deeply knows and loves his sheep to the point of death – literally sacrificing his own life to save us.
Almost three years ago, my husband and I moved to Kentucky. It is, yet again, wildly different from what is familiar to my comfort zone. But just like my time in Mexico, I’m more and more aware that Jesus is the shepherd of my life in every season.
While I continue to adjust to the different climate, a new church, new friendships, and all the changes that come with leaving a place you call home, I cling to this truth: Jesus is the good shepherd that takes care of me. And he takes care of you too. Because the Lord is our shepherd, we do not lack anything. Take heart, friend. He has and will always provide for our needs.
This post is part of Summer of Psalms. Learn more about Liz and Summer of Psalms by clicking here.