He Restores My Soul

"He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name's sake." (Psalms 23:3)



Have you ever felt cast down and dejected?  Have you tasted defeat in your Christian life and felt the frustration of having fallen under temptation?  Well, David knew what it was to experience all of that. In another place David cried out, "Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God." (Psalms 42:11).  David was acquainted with the bitterness of feeling hopeless and without strength in himself.  Throughout the Bible we see examples of godly men and women who have faced similar situations. These examples can serve as encouragement to us today, because the same God who was faithful to them then will be faithful to us today.



David was well acquainted with the dangers which threatened the sheep which were under his care. He knew that the enemies of the sheep were lurking around almost constantly, ready to rush in to destroy and devour the sheep.  In like manner, we are warned by the apostle Peter, "Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour". (1 Peter 5:8).  Our adversary, the devil, is indeed a formidable foe, one with whom we would be utterly unable to cope without the help of our Shepherd; so Peter encourages us to look to the Shepherd, saying, "Casting all your care upon him; for he cares for you" (I Peter 5:7).  We would surely be devoured by the adversary were it not for the Good Shepherd's care; and we can surely trust Him to do for us all that we cannot do for ourselves.



Sheep have a predictable inclination to lose their way. They can be in a pasture with plenty of grass and adequate water and still wander aimlessly until they have nothing to eat or drink. Once lost, they can't find their way back. Many animals seem to have inborn compasses -- not so with sheep. Once lost, the shepherds must go and find them. Spiritually, people are like sheep. Isaiah the prophet wrote in (Isaiah 53:6), "All we like sheep have gone astray..."   I don't care how educated, book smart, rich, popular, or how experienced you are, we can fall.  Paul wrote, "So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don't fall"! (1 Corinthians 10:12).  In spite of all of the warnings we can still go astray.  But the Lord is not finished with us when that happens.  The psalmist reminds us that "He restores our soul."  But Who is this who will restore our souls?  The He who will restore your soul is the He who flung far worlds into their orbits and who maintains them in their paths (Colossians 1:15-17).  The He who will restore your soul is the He who made the lame to walk, the blind to see, the dumb to talk, the leprous to be clean, and the dead to rise.  The He who will restore your soul is the He who has all power in heaven and earth and will restore the joy of our salvation (Matthew 28:18-20). 



The Majesty of the Shepherd will lead us in paths of righteousness for our sake and for His name's sake. The Good Shepherd's name is judged by the behavior, condition, and welfare of His sheep. God has connected His name and His glory with the walk and conduct of His people. Only if we walk in "paths of righteousness" can we uphold the reputation of the Good Shepherd.  There are three things we need to do in seeking God's help to lead us in the paths of righteousness:  Ask God to give us wisdom (James 1:5).  Ask God to guide our walk (Isaiah 30:21).  Ask God to guard our ways (Psalms 139:23-24).




As Christians, we are the sheep of God's pasture (Psalm 100:3), and only He can restore our souls.




"Daily Devotions by Guy Roberson"


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