Over the next few weeks I am posting excerpts from my new book, Your Destiny, His Glory! Hope you enjoy and order a copy soon! Just click on the picture to order.
Jehovah-Rohe is the pastoral word for shepherd.
Psalm 23. “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will 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 anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
More than any other gift, the Giver needs much reassurance of his safety and security; therefore, the compound name of Jehovah for this gift is Jehovah-Rohe, our Good Shepherd of Psalm 23.
The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. Knowing God for His faithfulness builds a security for the Giver to give him confidence that this Good Shepherd will supply all his needs according to His riches in glory.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures. Only when he is fully convinced in his spirit that God is in control, and He is big enough to take care of all his needs, will the Giver lie down and rest from his multitude of projects and people.
He leads me beside still waters. Sheep are not very good swimmers. Their wool is thick and will quickly absorb water. This hazard can set up a recipe for drowning. Swiftly moving water would be a dangerous place for sheep to drink. But the Good Shepherd knows this. After all, He created the sheep and knows his fear. So He leads him beside still water for a drink. When the only water available is running water, the Shepherd scoops up the water and gives him a drink from His own hand.
The Good Shepherd knows the dangers and fears the Giver faces. He goes ahead of him to make a place of quiet waters so he can drink deeply of the Living Water of life, even from His own hand. Oh, how He loves the Giver! Oh, how He understands him, his fear and anxiety, his need for control. But oh, how He longs to be his friend! To eat a covenant meal with him like he did with Abraham, to share His heart with him, to have the Giver know Him intimately, face to face.
When his life is out of control, and he cannot provide all he needs, the Giver must quickly run to his Shepherd. Run to Him, spend time with Him, get to know Him face to face. God wants to be the Giver’s BFF (Best Friend Forever). Then this precious Giver can partner with the Creator of the Universe to change nations, birth new ministries, and see His Kingdom advanced in the world around him. In this place of peace and rest his soul will be restored.
There will be no compromise in his life style, because he understands God is the Supplier, not himself. Never breaching any lines of integrity with halfway obedience, the Giver can live in full confidence, trusting the Lord that he will be in the right place at the right time with the right provision, because he is with the right Shepherd.
He can walk through the valley of the shadow of death, because his friend, the Good Shepherd, is with him.
Your rod and staff are a comfort. While visiting with a local shepherd several years ago, he showed me his rod. It was an ominous looking club. He told me sheep are literally hardheaded, and sometimes he had to “bop” them on the head to let them know he is trying to lead them, but they are not following. For some of his sheep, however, he only has to lay this club on their neck, and they respond quickly to the touch of his rod to follow their shepherd.
When he did have to “bop” them, it was not because he was upset or wanted to punish them. It was to make sure they stayed on the path he had chosen for them or to keep them from eating or drinking substances that were not good for them. His rod was a comfort because it was a sign that he was near and was watching out for their good.
When the sheep dog got a little “nippy,” the shepherd could use the rod to protect his sheep. What a Good Shepherd we have. The Giver can also be a little hard-headed at times. He can be relentless, never giving up easily. If this hard-headedness is focused against the will of the Shepherd, He will discipline him so the Giver remembers who is really in charge.
He prepares a table, a communion table. It cost our Good Shepherd a high price to set this table, but He says to the Giver and to all of us, “You are worth it!” As a Giver looks at the cost of this table and the immensity of the Shepherd’s love for him, he has a choice:
- He can turn away with the attitude of “I deserve all I get and I can supply all of my needs. I choose not to become vulnerable.”
- Or in all humility, he can bow low at the cross, become vulnerable, and with a grateful heart kneel at this table. As the enemies of the Shepherd watch this extravagant display of His boundless love and commitment to this one, they realize once again their powerlessness to harm His sheep.
Then out of His mercy and grace, the Shepherd pours His oil, His anointing, on the Giver and releases so much living water, so much life, that it spills over on all around him. From this place of overflow the Giver releases the blessings of God’s grace everywhere he goes. Life springs up all around him. A trail of mercy and goodness is left for others to follow and discover where our Lover keeps his sheep (Song of Solomon). That is evangelism at its finest for the Giver.
I have asked several Givers what their greatest fear might be, and I have been surprised at their answers. Three of the five interviewed answered the same way, “That I would die needy and poor.” The Great Shepherd knew this, too, because in this psalm He spoke of having no fear of death, that goodness and mercy would follow the Giver all of his days, and that he would dwell in God’s house forever. Such comfort, such peace. Such a Shepherd.
When the Giver finds his security, provision, and safety in Jehovah-Rohe, our Good Shepherd, and responds in holiness from his heart, the payoff is generationally extravagant.