He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters.
God as our shepherd provides for our spiritual nourishment and refreshment.
It’s only when we heed Jesus’ instruction to lie down, and we let Him lead us by the quiet waters, when we obey, that we receive these times of refreshing.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures;
Sheep usually stand.
Sheep stand because they are afraid; sheep rest when they are free from fear
Because of all those potential predators like wolves, coyotes, dogs, bears, and lions and the like, sheep are easily frightened.
Fear and anxiety can be both harmful to us personally, and cause us to make decisions that are not in our best interest or in the interest of our calling as disciples of Christ.
But if we ourselves are afraid, we will not find the rest in God that will let us trust Him to lead.
Sheep stand to eat because they’re hungry; Sheep rest when they are Well-fed
Just as sheep are well-fed on grass, we as believers are fed on the Word of God.
When we dwell in the Word of God, we receive the comfort that we need.
When we eat it—apply it to our lives, then it provides nourishment for us.
Sheep stand because they feel friction within the flock
The most dominant sheep will butt those who they think are less worthy than themselves .
To sow discord, or to cause problems among God’s people, is the exact opposite of what God expects as from us as one of His children (Proverbs 6:19).
We also can’t use the Bible as a club to beat people over the head with. When we correct or admonish, we must do it in love, just like God does with us.
Sheep stand because they are tormented by flies and parasites
Sheep have kind of an issue when it comes to flies and parasites because they don’t have hands to be able to get rid of them.
These can sometimes be circumstances that just seem unfair or seem to be trouble tailor-made to get on our nerves.
These can sometimes be people who just seem to rub us the wrong way, or who’s habits and mannerisms just seem to bother us.
Give them to the Lord.
Sheep stand because they search for greener grass
Some sheep are just restless and discontented. Even when they have good pasture, good water a good shepherd, they’re always looking out longingly at the other side of the fence
1 John 2:15 Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
Rest in the Lord
So what does it mean to rest in the Lord?
Jesus said in Matthew 11:28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
God wants to give us His rest.
He leads me beside quiet waters.
we need His guidance, so David says “he leads me.”
Jesus leads us by His example, and the gentle drawing of his love.
The Lord provides for our spiritual needs.
The still waters are very much needed by the sheep as we receive cooling refreshment from the Holy Spirit, reviving us from our weariness and refreshing us when we are thirsty.
John 7:37 Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink.
This joy of communion with God, our spirit with the Holy Spirit, the refreshment that is always available to us as we are lead by Jesus by the still waters, freely able to drink of the living waters.