In contrast, the Bible talks about how pastors are to be like shepherds. They do not lord over us, but guide us, look out for us, restore our soul. In 1990, our family lived in the Philippines and we experienced a major earthquake. Reports at the time said the magnitude was 7.8 to 8.0 on the Richter scale. The initial quake lasted 45 seconds and within a minute there was a second earthquake lasting around 30 seconds. There were 673 aftershocks that first week alone. Some of those aftershocks were 6.0 and above and it was very difficult to function normally when the ground was moving so much. We never knew if the next aftershock was going to be another major earthquake and if we needed to escape the building. Having an infant and 3-yr old to protect kept me on edge. I was having trouble finding my Shepherd amidst the chaos going around me and beneath my feet.
Needless to say, my mind sometimes refused to settle. This song, however, did bring peace to my soul and it was played over and over again -and loudly. I wanted the truth to invade the fear that I was experiencing. The song is about the Good Shepherd, based on Psalm 23.
Some who have left may be experiencing a whirlwind of emotions: sadness, anger, grief, relief, powerlessness, fear, shame, doubt, anxiety, etc. What helped me during my tumultuous time was to cling to what I knew was true. The Good Shepherd, Jesus, was my solid ground and I sung my heart out to Him. When I was focused on Him, my emotional ground was peacefully still. I needed the Shepherd to tend my soul.
Psalm 23, ESV
The Lord Is My Shepherd
A Psalm of David.
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name's sake.
Even 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 overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord