|He restores my soul – Psalm 23:3.
Our mentor, Dr. John Woodward of Grace Fellowship International, reminded us of this well-known phrase in one of the most beloved passages of the Bible. Although I have read and heard and memorized it, somehow that thought really captured me this morning. I noticed that it is written in the present tense, describing an ongoing process. As we minister to people dealing with addiction, either theirs or that of a loved one, we see deeply wounded and worn-out souls. We ourselves struggle through the implications of Joe’s ongoing illness as well as the stresses of full-time ministry in a hurting world. King David was no stranger to suffering, yet he assures us of Father’s ongoing work in our souls (our mind, will, and emotions). He is intimately aware and involved in our pain and woundedness and offers that cool cup of water when we long for peace and relief.
One of the definitions of the word restore is" to repair or renovate so as to return it to its original condition." The idea is to make something as good as new. Our gentle Shepherd longs for us to allow Him to make us new, offering healing to our minds, our wills, and our emotions. Why do we fight against what we so desperately need? Is it because we want to be in charge, independent, and able to handle our own "stuff? All He asks is that we find our love and acceptance in Him – He will do the rest.
The old hymn Peace, Perfect Peace says it well:
"Peace, perfect peace, in this dark world of sin? The blood of Jesus whispers peace within.
Peace, perfect peace, with sorrows surging round? On Jesus’ bosom naught but calm is found.
Peace, perfect peace, our future all unknown? Jesus we know, and He is on the throne.
Peace, perfect peace, death shadowing us and ours? Jesus has vanquished death and all its powers.
It is enough: earth’s struggles soon shall cease. And Jesus calls us to heaven’s perfect peace."