Jesus, Our Place of Peace

August 30, 2021

“He lets me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul; He guides me in paths of righteousness for the sake of His name.”  Psalm 23:2-3

The image these verses give us is of a shepherd taking his travel-weary sheep that have just run a figurative gauntlet. They are famished, maybe they have just escaped some predators, and the shepherd takes them to rest by grassy meadows and waters.

Don’t you just love this image? Wouldn’t you love to have a place like this in your own life? A place where you could find respite and restoration in a world full of hardship and chaos? There is something about water that we find peaceful and refreshing.  It could be literal: — an ocean, a lake, a waterfall. Or maybe it could be figurative, where you’re sitting down with a good book and a cup of coffee, or taking a Saturday hike through the mountains. It could be as simple as unplugging from technology for a couple of days. Whatever it is, let your Shepherd lead you there.

Even more important than our need for physical or emotional rest is our need for spiritual rest. Our souls are often in turmoil and we need something more than just physical escape — we need spiritual restoration. The language of the Shepherd restoring our souls is used throughout the Old Testament to describe returning something to its original state. And one can’t help but recall the words of Jesus in Matthew 11:28 where He says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” You will find rest by the waters of Christ. 

Do you need rest today? Are you weary and heavy-laden with the trials of life? Jesus, your Shepherd, desires to restore you — to lead you to Himself. Ask Him to renew you with His Spirit today.

Written by Austin Baker, Teaching Pastor, Johnson Ferry Baptist Church