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As your shepherd, the Lord attends to your needs, even when your life is difficult

My mother passed away on Dec. 6 of this last year. She had a rough life like many others in this world.

She had two failed marriages, one to my dad, one to my step-dad. My mom found herself in a troubled life when she turned to alcohol and drugs after her divorce from my dad and her involvement with my step-dad.

Her addictions became so encompassing on her life, that she figured out if she gave us kids up to foster care, she would have more money for her drinking and drugging. Her life was spiraling more and more out of control. She seemed to never be at peace, or to fill that loneliness inside herself. Her life was a total wreck.

Her childhood was not much different. Her father was an angry alcoholic who would beat her mom and be violent to her brothers and sister and herself. Though her mother was a caring and loving individual, her life seemed to give her every possible reason to feel outcast and searching for a way to become whole.

One day several years ago, she had come to the end of her rope. Desperate, feeling alone, she attempted suicide, fortunately that attempt failed. Life seemed hopeless and pointless, but then something changed.

My mom realized that her mom used to pray and call on the Lord. She remembered her mom's joy even during the rough times with her father and his angry outburst. She prayed and asked God to forgive her, and a new hope began to overtake her feelings of despair. She remembered her mother reading her Bible and remembered a scripture her mom read.

You probably will recognize it – it is probably a scripture you've heard before. It goes something like this:

"The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me besides quiet waters. He restores my soul; He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name's sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for you are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You have anointed my head with oil; My cup overflows. Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever."

As my mom and I discussed Psalm 23 from time to time, we realized the pro-activeness of God through this passage. Listen to these words, "The Lord is my Shepard," "He makes me lie down in green pastures;" "He leads me besides quiet waters." "He restores my soul;" "He guides me in paths of righteousness," "You are with me;" "Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me." "You prepare a table before me," "You anointed my head with oil."

Here, God is attending to our needs. When I need to rest, he provides green pastures to lie in. When I feel overwhelmed with life, we walk by quiet waters. God cares enough to restore me. He shows me ways of right living. He stays with me. He protects me. He feeds me during trials. He heals me and sets me aside for His Holy work.

How much more can God show His love for us?

Remember the peace of God in your life, and as troubles seek you out, hold on to the true nature of God.

Greg Sanders is the executive director of Redemption House Ministries in Prineville. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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