Never Alone - Dependence > Independence
Today we learned about Psalm 23:2, "He makes me to lie down in green pastures. He leads my beside still waters..." We must keep in mind that shepherds lead sheep; they do not drive cattle. There is care and understanding for the sheep.
Makes me to lie down - also translates into "he sets me down"; "he settles me down"; "he rests me down". Sheep need to know that they are secure and protected. Sheep are needy, and they are not too bright. They are dependent on the shepherd to be led.
Green Pastures - also known as "grassy pastures". The idea is that shepherds know where to find food in a harsh desert environment. God is saying, "trust me in community, and I'll take you to the places you can eat and find fellowship."
God often takes us to desert places so we can be dependent on Him. We have so much here in South Charlotte, that we must be careful to stray away from community with God.
Still Waters - come from morning dew, digging wells, and saving water. Still water is critical for the sheep. Moving water will cause the sheep's beard to move in the water and the sheep may tip forward and drown. The shepherd knows this and leads the sheep to calm pools of water that he has already scouted.
Remember, we are the Imago Dei - image bearers of God. God is a triune God, so He in Himself is community. We are made for community. Don't live in isolation.
Paul David Tripp says it this way, "We are less than human when we are not in relationships."
To Discuss Today:
1. Do you know the environment of "your people" so well that you can prepare for them ahead of time? Give examples?
2. Who is your community?
3. Use your "Never Alone" journal and answer the questions:
A. What does this passage say about God's character?
B. What does is say about man's character?
C. What can I obey?
D. Who can I tell?