June 1, 2023
The Bible Edge
Everyone needs an Edge, Believers can have a Bible Edge
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
He is the Lord. The first verse of this Psalm makes that clear: The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. The sweet Psalmist of Israel (King David) wrote this. He may have been a lord on earth, but he knew that there was a Lord in Heaven. That Lord, the Lord of Heaven, is immensely more important than him. He wanted for nothing because he, as a king, had a King, the King of Kings, the Lord God. That King watched over David and that King will watch over you. If that is, He is your Lord, your King.
David’s Lord made him to lie down in green pastures and led him beside the still waters. Both of these “word pictures” convey safety, security, and serenity. Three things that most individuals today seem to be lacking. They are so busy, too busy, so much in turmoil for the world and all that therein is, which seems to do nothing but create fear and trouble in the heart. Let me tell you how God taught me to “lie down” and rest for a while.
It was some years ago, it was a Sunday morning, I was in the introduction of a message to our church. All of a sudden, everything seemed to spin, I was confused, the thoughts were in my brain but would not come out of my mouth. I tried to continue. Even stopping and praying for the message a second time, but it got worse. I was about to fall, and I knew it. So, I stopped, looked at my wife and said, “We have to leave right now.” I walked, barely able to, but I walked off the platform and somehow made it down the steps of the altar before two men were beside me helping me to the car. I told my wife to take me home. Being the rebellious woman that she is, that command was ignored; she took me to the hospital instead.
There I was, lying in the hospital room in the middle of the night alone, and it came to me. Today’s verse echoed in my mind, and it was as if the Lord was revealing to me… “If you do not learn how to lay yourself down once in a while, I will lay you down!” I have tried to take that to heart. Now I take more vacations, where in years past I took very few. I try to relax at home on my deck or in my easy chair in the evenings. I pray more. Spend more time in the Bible and simply talking to people. I have reduced my physical work to an embarrassing level bordering on that which I think is laziness, but my mind seems to be more at rest. I seem to be relaxing in the green pastures and walking beside still waters.
Whenever I sense a mental, or emotional overload I have learned to slow down and relax. I do not work like I used to physically, but I believe spiritually my work has exploded. Prayer and the ministry of the Word are my only two professional goals. Living with the wife of my youth for the rest of my life with a clear mind and restful spirit are two of my personal goals. For those who read these devotions every day, it seems that our Lord, our King, wanted me to share these words with you today. May they help others to learn to lay yourself down once in a while, so that He will not have to. That is the Bible Edge for today.
William T. Howe, Ph.D.