- P. Tarcisio
“The lord is my sheperd; there is nothing I shall want” Psalm 23 (22).
1. TYPE OF PSALM:
Psalm of trust in God
We usually sing this psalm at funerals; perhaps to remember that in moments of pain, God does not leave us alone or "even if we walk through dark valleys" and as dark as death. But it is also sung on feast days, because it is a psalm of joy.
Trust is a human feeling that causes security, inner peace, hope. And from there comes this prayer from the psalmist, who recognizes the presence of God in his life, that is why he is confident and loudly sings his emotion to feel guided and protected.
2. READ THE WORD
Psalm 22, 1-3a. 3b-4. 5. 6
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. In verdant pastures he gives me repose; beside restful waters he leads me; he refreshes my soul.
He guides me in right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk in the dark valley I fear no evil; for you are at my side. With your rod and your staff that give me courage.
You spread the table before me in the sight of my foes; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.
Only goodness and kindness follow me all the days of my life; and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD for years to come.
What does the text say?
Verses (vv.) 1-3. The person who sings this psalm is a confident, calm person, because he knows that God is at his side and wants to protect him. It is like having a shepherd who gives himself for the welfare of his flock and seeks the best for each of his sheep.
v.4. But, not content with announcing his trust in God, he also says that, even if his life were in difficult moments, he would cross those valleys of pain without fear, because the Lord is the one who leads him and He is above all the evil that there may be in this world.
vv.5-6. The psalm concludes with the image of a feast, in which God is the splendid host of the banquet, in which joy is abundant, and therefore, that happiness is a source of envy for the adversaries of the diners.
The banquet is celebrated in the house of God, the temple in Jerusalem, where the pilgrim ascends year after year. And once the visit is over, he set out on his journey home, assured of the protection of the Lord. In this way, the pilgrim walks away hoping to return to the house of God next year, to regain strength.
3. MEDITATE ON THE WORD.
Does this reading say anything special to you?
Trust in God brings joy and tranquility to the psalmist. And for us, where does trust come from? Probably the moment in which our life is now, is not one of those "green meadows", where you can rest, but one of the "dark valleys", of which the psalm speaks. However, we must trust ourselves, our loved ones, friends, and people who come to us to give us a hand in difficulty. But above all, let us not forget that the greatest trust must be in our Shepherd, God.
4. ORAR CON LA PALABRA.
¿Qué le dices tú a Dios?
Lord, my Good Shepherd, do not leave me in my dark moments. Deliver me from evil and take me to the place of your rest and happiness.
5. CONTEMPLAR LA PALABRA.
¿Cómo cambia tu mirada?
Although we are going through difficult times, there is no need to fear or lose confidence that we will be able to get out of those "dark valleys", because God is our Shepherd, and walking according to his will, we will not lack anything.