Can you see yourself lying on a blanket in the green grass, flower blossoms all around, a gentle breeze slightly blowing your hair and the quiet trickle of a nearby stream… just you and God, relaxing and hanging out?
I don’t know about you, but it’s difficult for me to connect with those images. It all sounds more like some butter commercial than an actual day in my life.
Consider the following passages and whether or not it characterizes your life.
Psalm 23:1–3 (ESV) — 1 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. 3 He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Kind David may have written those words several thousand years ago but the truths contained in those verses and their application in our daily lives is timeless. Sadly, any image of our lying on a blanket with God next to a stream is only one that we associate with our passing. And for many, the only time they will ever hear these passages will be at a funeral.
It’s hard for us to imagine spending quiet moments with God because we are typically too busy to stop. Sure, we consider the Lord our shepherd but we have lots of wants. Our lives are more filled with the pursuit of the insignificant, than they are filled with the pursuit of the One who gives us significance. The One who teaches us to rest, He leads us in quiet places, He restores our soul and He leads us in paths that bring honor to His name.
In our world of unprecedented activity, education, connection and progress, we also have unprecedented stress. Medical researchers tell us that 3 out of 4 Americans report a need to reduce stress in their lives. Is it possible that we need to take a lesson from the Psalms? Do we need to learn how to turn off all our devices and notifications and simply enjoy God’s presence? Is it possible that we are missing out on the true restoration in our souls that only the Lord can supply?
I love God’s promise to His people in Exodus 14:14, “The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.”
I pray you will discover fresh grace from the Lord today as you learn to be still and enjoy His presence.
Greg Richards is Lead Pastor at Life Church, located on the square in Kaufman. YourLifeChurch.com