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  • Writer's pictureMarnie Hammar

Lessons from the Shepherd About the Rod and Staff

All those years in church, all those sermons on Psalm 23, and I still never got it.⁠

Somewhere along the way, when I read, “Your rod and your staff, they comfort me” (Psalm 23:4, ESV), I believed those were tools for my discipline. Wasn’t a rod used for striking? Wasn’t a staff for yanking the sheep back? Neither seemed a likely tool for my comfort. They felt more like a spanking. A reminder of my sin. ⁠

Yes, this gives you a glimpse into my messed-up churchy thinking. I didn’t see the rest of that Psalm—how I have nothing to fear, or how He prepares a feast for me in front of my enemies, or how goodness and mercy follow me. I just saw the rod and the staff. Because I didn’t know my Good Shepherd.⁠

It took a lot of sitting in His presence to undo that thinking.

Read the rest at The Joyful Life Magazine.


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