I write for a local homeschool support group’s newsletter. This is an excerpt from an article I wrote for the latest edition. I plan to continue with this study over the next couple weeks on closetoJesus.org.
The Father’s Role as Shepherd
Have you ever tried reading the 23rd Psalm, placing yourself as the shepherd? When you think about it, a father is the shepherd over his family. This is something worth meditating on! Let’s read together through
“The Shepherd’s Psalm.”
1 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
Psalm 23 (KJV)
What if verse one read: “My daddy is my shepherd; I shall not want.” That paraphrase of the verse makes every line that follows, personal. Of course you can’t take the place of the Lord, but God does give you the responsibility to raise, nurture, instruct, discipline, lead, protect, and guide your children. By homeschooling, you have taken a great step towards raising your children for God.
Verse two is always a comfort to me. It is a real help on hectic days to go to the green pasture and the still waters. Think on this as it relates to your family. Is your homeschool and family life leading your children to the green pastures that David described? Or, is it an asphalt parking lot on a 100 degree day!
What about the still waters? I read once that sheep will only drink from calm streams. If the waters are too fast, they won’t drink! You see sheep are afraid of fast moving water. What about your children? Do they have still waters from which to drink God’s word? Is there peace in your life, or are you trying to get them to drink from white water rapids.
All of Psalm 23 is rich with things to think upon. Spend some time soaking up the wisdom that is in these six short verses. Take a day for each one! Remember, Jesus said, “I am the good Shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.” John 10:11 (KJV)
Be a good father/shepherd. I encourage you in Christ.