We find freedom from fear when we find our identity in God's care.
Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
As we take another look at Psalm 23, we can be encouraged by the fact that God wants us to live free from fear. I'm going to point out 3 elements from this verse that we can use to build our trust in God.
We should not be surprised by dark valleys in our lives.
"Mountain Top" theology can be devastating when the trials that Jesus promised us come. Don't listen to people that tell you bad things only happen when you don't have enough faith or enough holiness. One thing we can expect through the mountains and valleys of life is that God's presence is with us. Always.
The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. "Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged."
We can rely on God's protection.
The rod mentioned in verse 4 of Psalm 23 was a shepherd's weapon for killing predators. King David felt comfort knowing that God, the all-powerful Lord of the universe, was his defender.
We can trust God for direction, even in darkness
You can read this psalm as an invitation to greater faith, putting your trust in God when you don't know the way ahead. The unknown can be terrifying. When my wife was diagnosed with a rare and serious condition and I felt my heart sink low for days as I considered what might happen to her and to our family. Did she have months left to live or would she perhaps suffer the rest of a long life? Her attitude of thankfulness and faith in God's leading and goodness has helped me to leave that fear behind. The Lord is my shepherd. I lack nothing. If I trust He cares for me, then I can put my cares on him.