The 23rd Psalm
The 23rd Psalm is one of the best known and most beloved prayers in Christian liturgy. A great antidote to fear, it is an effective tool for calming your mind and opening yourself to Divine Guidance.
Should you find yourself feeling anxious or worried anytime, repeat the 23rd Psalm until your body relaxes and you feel mental relief.
And should you ever find yourself in the wrong place at the wrong time and perceive yourself in imminent danger, immediately ask God to get you (and any others) to safety. Then repeat the 23rd Psalm either silently to yourself or out loud for as long as it takes for your prayer to be answered and the crisis dissolved.
In my experience, one of three things will happen. You will be led by your intuition to take action that leads you to safety, the danger around you will not touch you, or the danger will disappear.
Fear of death is our greatest enemy. Yet death is an illusion – a shadow. A shadow cannot exist in the light, and the Light of God will be with you and guide you when you give yourself over to it through this prayer.
Yet, you do not need a crisis to use this prayer. Speaking it slowly and with feeling every day is a great spiritual practice that can only help uplift your life.
God is with you (and me) now and always. This psalm always brings me back to that awareness.
WORDS TO THE 23rd PSALM
Should you want to cut and paste the words of the 23rd Psalm into a document to print out, here’s my favorite version. Note that the modern day translation for enemies is “adversaries;” so if you would prefer to use “adversaries” instead of “enemies” please do.
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.
ABOUT THE IMAGE
The image in this post – as you can see – is Psalm 23 (King James’ Version), and was the frontispiece to the 1880 omnibus printing of The Sunday at Home: A Family Magazine for Sabbath Reading published by the Religious Tract Society of London, England. I found it – where else? – on Wikipedia.
Thought to have been created by Edward Evans (1826–1905), this media file is in the public domain in the United States. This applies to U.S. works where the copyright has expired, often because its first publication occurred prior to January 1, 1923.
Thought you might want like to have a copy of this (to frame or put on your fridge) to remind you that you can always turn to this prayer for solace day or night. So here’s a link to a high resolution version of the image. It should appear in a new tab.
Once the image comes up, just right click the image, save it, and print it. Note that this is a high resolution image so it will take a few minutes to download. The size of the file is 19,895 KB and the image is actually 5192 pixels wide and 7116 pixels tall so it’s big enough to turn it into a poster.
Note that I’ve used a much smaller size of the image in this post, so my site loads quickly. Don’t right click on it, but click on the link above.