Martin Luther once said that most of experimental religion would be found in the personal and possessive pronouns of the Bible, and that is certainly true of this psalm, for here we find only six verses, and they contain only one hundred and eighteen words, and in this brief list twenty-eight pronouns may be counted. He called this psalm a little Bible, and well he might; for, if we had only this, we should certainly come to know the Lord, and when we know him we always trust him.
In the brevity of it it is like a short ladder, but it is long enough to reach from the gloom of this present evil day up to the brightness and glory of the perfect day; it is realty, if properly understood, a ladder of three rounds; namely, out of self; into Christ, and into glory. But there is really no part of the psalm that brings more comfort than your appropriation of him in the use of this pronoun “my.”
It will bring rejoicing where otherwise there would he despair; it will inspire a song where there might have been a groan; it will put a silver lining on every cloud; it will gird you with strength for every temptation. Say it over and over today, “He is my shepherd; he is MY shepherd.” This little word will make a paradise of earth, and fill with glory the home where you live and the place where you work; in a word, it will lift you up to the heavenlies. The water-spider forms a sac-like cottage, and fills it with air; then shuts herself in and sinks into the sea. She then anchors it and there brings forth her young, she practically lives in an upper world, although surrounded by all the dangers of the great deep. This is your privilege for this day and every day to live in the very atmosphere of heaven while working down here in the sin-tainted atmosphere of this world.
It is this personal appropriation of Christ that makes this world like heaven. It is this sweet fellowship that opens our eyes, so that again and again we cannot help saying, “Thou knowest that I love thee.”
“He knows how much I love him,
He knows I love him well,
But with what love he loveth me My tongue can never tell;
It is an everlasting love, An ever-rich supply;
And so we love each other, My Lord and I.”
SUGGESTIONS FOR TODAY:
1. Put aside generalities today. It is wonderful to say, The Lord is a shepherd, but it is better far to say, He is MINE. Let this day be lived in the preciousness of it.
2. If he is yours, then he will be to you what every shepherd in the New Testament is pictured as being to the sheep. He will seek you when wandering, find you when lost, hold you when found, and shield you from every harm.
3. There is no excuse for failure today with such a shepherd, and him all yours.