A "Bad" Psalm 23
Psalm 23 has been working on me for over a year now, and I'm still not finished with it.
I've been pondering all the ways that I could sing or pray Psalm 23. I can pray Psalm 23 as a prayer of worship--God, how incredible it is that you would care to be my shepherd.... I can pray it as a prayer of confession--Father, forgive me for calling you a bad shepherd who is not worthy of trusting..... I can pray Psalm 23 as a prayer of thanks--Thank you for being my shepherd who cares so much for me.... I can pray it as a a prayer of asking--Father, I need you to shepherd me and my family right now....
I've been pondering a "Bad" Psalm 23, though, that I more often live with. Here is a stab at it:
Bad Psalm 23
The Lord is a bad shepherd; I never have enough.
He makes me lie down in hard places.
He leads me into raging rapids.
He depletes my soul.
He ignores me on whatever paths I find myself because he doesn't care.
Because I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear evil, for you abandoned me here; your rod and your staff, they hurt me.
You prepare a table before me so that my enemies could devour me; you anoint my head with strife; my cup is almost empty.
Surely difficulty and despair shall follow me all the days of my life and I shall dwell away from the house of the Lord forever.
None of this is true, but it is the lie that I hear often. Maybe you do to.
I'm thankful that this is not my record. The truth of the gospel is that Jesus sings this song for us. He tells us that he is the Good Shepherd and he lays down his life for the sheep.