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Psalm 23

Psalm 23

I’m excited to present this lyrical addition to our Practice of Praise. The twenty-third psalm is perhaps the most famous (and beloved!) of all 150 Psalms found in the Bible. Today’s featured song, Psalm 23, is featured in Phil Wickham’s release, I Believe.

The piece features both Phil Wickham and Tiffany Hudson, whose sweet voice blends beautifully with Wickham’s soulful sound.

Here is Psalm 23, in its entirety. All six verses:

A Psalm of David.

1The LORD is my shepherd;a

I shall not want.

2He makes me lie down in green pastures;

He leads me beside quiet waters.

3He restores my soul;

He guides me in the paths of righteousness

for the sake of His name.

4Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,b

I will fear no evil,

for You are with me;

Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

5You prepare a table before me

in the presence of my enemies.

You anoint my head with oil;

my cup overflows.

6Surely goodness and mercy will follow me

all the days of my life,

and I will dwell in the house of the LORD


Psalm 23

Notice how David (formerly a shepherd himself) introduces the key points that every shepherd knows the sheep will require.







Future Hope

(OK, maybe sheep don’t experience this last need…but we sheep in God’s pasture sure do!)

That First Verse

Look at the place where God leads us, His sheep.

The Lord is my Shepherd, there’s nothing I need
You lead me to the safest places, You lead me to the safest places
To walk in the meadow and lie by the stream
You meet me in the quiet places, You meet me in the quiet places

Phil Wickham, Verse 1, Psalm 23

Notice how both Psalm 23 and Wickham’s first verse present the theme of God guiding us into safe places — quiet streams, peaceful meadows, restful places.

And yet, for many of us today, our lives might feel anything but safe, secure, or quiet. So what does Psalm 23 really mean, when our path forward throws us into rough seas, thorny patches, or terrifying terrain?

God Our Refuge

It’s God! He, Himself. HE is our peaceful meadow. HE is our quiet stream.

He Himself is our quiet place. His presence alone is the very peace that we seek. This is where our weary, stressed-out souls go for comfort, safety, and restoration.

He is our refuge. In the midst of any storm.

No matter what is threatening your peace today, no matter what is overwhelming you and making off with your joy, run to the Shepherd. There is room for you within His fold. His pasture is open, welcoming, safe. Lay yourself down in His meadow, and let Him lead you to the safest places, the quiet places — into His loving arms.

We need to stay there for awhile. Long enough to breathe in His presence, and let our tensions go. Be Still, a post featuring the song by the same name, offers another song that celebrates this movement toward God.

Psalm 16

Scripture tells us this:

“You will make known to me the way of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.”

Psalm 16:11 (NASB)

Have you found that true? Have you, like David in Psalm 16, lingered for a time with your God?

David doesn’t wander far from God’s pasture. Smart man. He tells us that He keeps God “at his right hand”, and idiom that means not only right next to him, but within his power. In ancient times, the right hand symbolized a person’s ultimate source of strength and power. David is telling us something important. Take a look:

I have set the LORD always before me.

Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.

Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will dwell securely.

Read the whole psalm here.

(For more on practicing the presence of God in your daily life, head over to Practicing the Presence of God.)

Let us rest today in his pasture. Let us, like David, celebrate our relationship with our Shepherd, by exalting Him. More worship songs are available here, at the SaltySoundGirl playlist.

Phil Wickham – Psalm 23 (Official Lyric Video) ft. Tiffany Hudson