Tag Archives: Yahweh

The Shepherd is my Provider (Psalm 23 Explained)

Psalm 23 Explained

I was asked today by a dear friend on my Google Plus network if I could explain the meaning of Psalm 23 and what was the reason this is also read on funerals when someone is getting ready to meet the Lord. I have never been to a funeral so I didn’t know what they read but is a beautiful chapter and here is what I would like to share about it.

A Psalm of David.

23 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. 2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. 3 He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake. 4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. 6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever.
Psalm 23
New King James Version (NKJV)

As we see in verse 1 “The Lord is my shepherd,” we must put ourselves as sheep in the care of Jesus Christ our Messiah and savior who is Himself God as we read in John 1:1-3, 14 and Heb. 1:2

1 In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He existed in the beginning with God. 3 God created everything through him, and nothing was created except through him.
John 1:1-3
New Living Translation (NLT)

2 And now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son he created the universe.
Hebrews 1:2
New Living Translation (NLT)

Christ is our shepherd and we are His chosen ones as sheep (John 10, John 21:15-17 and Hebrews 13:20). The shepherd is the provider and protector of his flock. The sheep are helpless without him. Similarly, human existence is but a sinful, carnal experience without God in our lives (John 5:30; Rom. 8:6-11).

How about this phrase “I shall not want,” this is an indication that as sheep in Christ’s care, we won’t lack anything. We should have a full understanding in regards to putting God and God’s way first in our life. (Matthew 6:25-34). See also the blog post “What is the Motive in your Life” which talks about not getting distracted and to focus in God’s plan in everyone’s life, and also the blog post “God Gives Life and a calling in everyone’s life” which talks about seeking God’s will in our life and then follow it.

“He makes me to lie down in green pastures: he leads me beside the still waters.” Both the “green pastures” and “still waters” indicate a blessed abundance, further illustrating the benefits of a God-led life.

Psalm 23:3 begins, “He restores my soul.” We must understand that we are sinners, but also that Christ had redeemed us and would continue to restore us upon repentance. The blog post “Forgiveness is not an option but a command” is a good example showing an understanding of repentance and forgiveness.

“he leads me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake,” indicates that it is Christ’s example that we are to follow, and that is to God’s glory when we obey. Yet is only through the power of the Holy Spirit, and Jesus Christ in us, that we are even able to do so (Gal. 2:20; Phil. 4:13). All of our Lord Yahweh’s commandments are righteousness.

172 My tongue shall speak of Your word, For all Your commandments are righteousness.
Psalm 119:172
New King James Version (NKJV)

King David was the one who wrote Psalm 23 and he knew that occasionally the shepherd had to lead his flock through treacherous terrain, and so he writes (as the sheep), “Yes, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff they comfort me.” David had complete trust and confidence in God and His way—He had no fear, even in the “shadow of death.” The rod and staff are the shepherd’s tools, and are used to guide and correct the path of the sheep—much in the same way God has to oftentimes guide, and occasionally correct, our path. This comforted David and should also confort us. Paul indicates in II Timothy 1:7 that this mindset comes only from God: “For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”

“You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies: You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over.” We must understand the promises of blessings and protections even in our hardest times of our lives we must have complete confidence. (Eph. 3:20; Luke 11:9-13; compare though with James 4:1-3).

We should all know that as long as we would follow Christ, “…goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life.” in the kingdom of God: “and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.” We must dwell in his house as servants, to serve him for ever. If God’s goodness to us be like the morning light, which shines more and more to the perfect day, let not ours to Him be like the morning cloud and the early dew that passeth away.

Personally, I would say that the reason why this is read in funerals is because it remind us of God’s promise and because it comforts the people left behind that God is taking care of the recently deceased as He will also take care of us left behind as we wait upon His return.

In conclusion, the best possible way to put it is that the Lord is our shepherd, and He knows what we need better than we do. God wants us to have what is best for us. As long as we trust in Him as our shepherd, He will lead us to places of safety. He knows how to direct us away from places where we will stumble. Even when we have fallen, He can still rescue us.

Has this message touched you in any way? The love of our Heavenly Father could change hearts even at the last minutes of our lives. Don’t wait until is too late before repenting of your sins and make a better change in your life to walk away from all the earthly pleasures. They give no life but bring sorrows and pain into our life and ultimately they only lead to death. Start the walk and make a change for yourself and your family. Be the leader your family deserves. All you have to do is Surrender and make the decision to follow Christ and be ready to be use in a magnificent way to glorify the name of the Lord.


God Gives Life and a calling in everyone’s life.

Jeremiah’s Call

4 The Lord gave me this message:
5 “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.”

Jeremiah 1:4-5
New Living Translation (NLT)

One important message in this passage is that the creation of life is glorious and mysterious. Humans have been blessed as participants in God’s design for the furthering of the human race. We give physical birth to children-but God gives life.

This passage also informs us that God sets certain people apart for his work in the world. Jeremiah became a great prophet to the people of Israel. His work was not easy. People often didn’t want to hear his messages. But he persevered and obeyed God.

Each of us is also called by God for specific work here on earth. We may not be recipients of proclamations the way Jeremiah was, but we have other assignments to fullfill.

One of our greatest blessings is the ability to understand our callings. We can go to the Bible and read God’s words for us. We can ascertain our spiritual gifts. We can talk and pray with our spouses and bring the bending of two lives into the work that God has called us to do.

We know that some assignments are not grand or glorious. Some are difficult. Some are painstakingly slow in producing fruit. But when we endeavor to live out these callings, we find God’s blessings on all aspects of our lives.

God may not want us to be prophets like Jeremiah, but he does have a plan for us. it is our responsibility to cooperate with God now so that we can fulfill His plans for our lives. We need to seek out God’s will and then follow it. God will help and encourage us as we do it.

18 Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. 19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

Matthew 28:18-20
New Living Translation (NLT)

The message of new life through faith in the crucified and resurrected Christ is to be offered to all the nations of the world. Those who by faith trust Christ for salvation are baptized to display their commitment. Continual instruction in the faith helps us grow and preserve our spiritual gains.

Jesus told His disciples to spread the gospel to all the world. So this is indeed something that we must do. How are you spreading the good news? What methods are you currently using to Evangelize to other brothers and sisters?

There are many blogs and websites that are dedicated to teach people how to use their social medias to better spread the good news to the lost. For an example Not Ashamed of the Gospel which wrote a blog post about this matter.

Has this message touched you in any way? Make the decision and follow Christ and be ready to be use in a magnificent way to glorify the name of the Lord.


We are not Alone

We Are Not Alone

Our God is everywhere. We could never run away from Him even if we tried. Such knowledge should keep us from entering into sin and encourage us to follow Him, knowing He is there to help us. Just as He is not limited by space, neither is He limited by time. He works with us day and night to strengthen and encourage us.

O Lord , you have examined my heart
and know everything about me.
You know when I sit down or stand up.
You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.
You see me when I travel
and when I rest at home.
You know everything I do.
You know what I am going to say
even before I say it, Lord .
You go before me and follow me.
You place your hand of blessing on my head.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too great for me to understand!

I can never escape from your Spirit!
I can never get away from your presence!
If I go up to heaven, you are there;
if I go down to the grave, you are there.
If I ride the wings of the morning,
if I dwell by the farthest oceans,
even there your hand will guide me,
and your strength will support me.
I could ask the darkness to hide me
and the light around me to become night—
but even in darkness I cannot hide from you.
To you the night shines as bright as day.
Darkness and light are the same to you.

You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body
and knit me together in my mother’s womb.
Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!
Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.
You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion,
as I was woven together in the dark of the womb.
You saw me before I was born.
Every day of my life was recorded in your book.
Every moment was laid out
before a single day had passed.

How precious are your thoughts about me, O God.
They cannot be numbered!
I can’t even count them;
they outnumber the grains of sand!
And when I wake up,
you are still with me!

O God, if only you would destroy the wicked!
Get out of my life, you murderers!
They blaspheme you;
your enemies misuse your name.
O Lord , shouldn’t I hate those who hate you?
Shouldn’t I despise those who oppose you?
Yes, I hate them with total hatred,
for your enemies are my enemies.

Search me, O God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
Point out anything in me that offends you,
and lead me along the path of everlasting life.

Psalm 139:1-24 NLT

Each of us is an amazing creation – wonderfully made! More than that, God is thinking about us at all times! Anytime we see ourselves as worthless, we are not seeing the truth. We need to begin to see ourselves as God sees us. When we see the truth that we are wonderfully made by God Himself, we will be encouraged to surrender our lives to Him so that He can transform us into the people He created us to be.


Prayer of Dedication

“O Lord, God of Israel, there is no God like you in all of heaven above or on the earth below. You keep your covenant and show unfailing love to all who walk before you in wholehearted devotion. Nevertheless, listen to my prayer and my plea, O Lord my God. Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is making to you today. May you hear the humble and earnest requests from me and your people Israel when we pray toward this place. Yes, hear us from heaven where you live, and when you hear, forgive. and if your people Israel pray about their troubles, raising their hands toward this Temple, then hear from heaven where you live, and forgive. Give your people what their actions deserve, for you alone know each human heart. Then they will fear you as long as they live in the land you gave to our ancestors.
Forgive your people who have sinned against you. Forgive all the offenses they have committed against you. Make their captors merciful to them, “May your eyes be open to my requests and to the requests of your people Israel. May you hear and answer them whenever they cry out to you.

1 Kings 8:23, 28, 30, 38-40, 50, 52 NLT


Surrender your Life to God! (A Prayer for Fathers)

20120531-064214.jpg

There is nothing greater than a man who has surrendered his life to the power of the Holy Spirit and he becomes an instrument in this world and in this church. When God fulfills a man’s heart and he is content, he can do great things for God. God has given you a family and God has ordained you and God has given you strength and it is through Jesus Christ that we come to know who we are.

So let me pray for all the Fathers that this year would be the best year you ever had as a man, in your thoughts, in your purity and with your family that you have ever experienced.

Prayer: Father, I pray, God, this year more than any other year that You would grant these men, these fathers, great, great hearts of understanding. Lord, as they have grown before You, may they come to an understanding of who You are. I pray that their priorities would begin to change and that, God, You would become so dominant in their life that, Father, their family, their children and their wives would see it. Now, God, begin to use them in a way that they have never been used before. Lord, they are the pillars of the church. They are the pillars of a country. I pray, God, that You would make them men of integrity, men of strength and men of courage. Thank You, God, for their lives and what they mean to us. I pray, God that their families would always, always love them and respect them. In Jesus’ name we pray…Amen! God bless you!


IN TRIALS…

We Learn Patience

For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.
James 1:3 NLT

We Are Perfect and complete

So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.
James 1:4 NLT

We Gain Wisdom

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. James 1:5 NLT

Our Faith is increased

But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind.
James 1:6 NLT


Satan is eager to destroy you

Satan is after us to destroy us

Satan’s plan toward Christians is to distract, detour, confuse you and make you critical. Anything to make you walk away from God’s real calling in your life. Now are we going to let this happen? But what can we do to fight against satan’s evil plans? We must pray for God to give us strength and focus in our lives. Satan’s power dominates us as humans been but his power is nothing against the Lord’s. His grace is sufficient to destroy and keep him away.

But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.
1 John 4:4 NLT

We are in Christ and delivered from the power of satan.

For he has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of his dear Son,
Colossians 1:13 NLT

Put on the The Whole Armor of God to protect us from the power of the evil one.

 A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.
Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.

Ephesians 6:10-18
New Living Translation (NLT)

I believe we could not defeat the evil plans of satan by ourselves, but if we put our trust, our hopes, our love in the power of the almighty God, Lord of Lords, We could indeed overcome satan’s evil trials. Let’s stand together for Christ and with the power of the Holy Spirit we will overcome!

Has this message touched you in any way? Make the decision and follow Christ and be ready to be use in a magnificent way to glorify the name of the Lord.


The Pharisees’ question concerning divorce.

But `God made them male and female’ from the beginning of creation. `This explains why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.’ Since they are no longer two but one, let no one split apart what God has joined together.”

Mark 10:6-9 NLT

Wherever Jesus was, the people flocked after him in crowds, and he taught them. Preaching was Christ’s constant practice. He here shows that the reason why Moses’ law allowed divorce, was such that they ought not to use the permission; it was only for the hardness of their hearts. God himself joined man and wife together; he has fitted them to be comforts and helps for each other. The bond which God has tied, is not to be lightly untied. Let those who are for putting away their wives consider what would become of themselves, if God should deal with them in like manner.

If you want to further read more concerning Marriage, please click here for the “All you need to know about Marriage” blog post.


“God was working on me as he was working through me”

Alex Kendrick is living proof that God can use obedient people to accomplish the seemingly impossible. How can he and the pastors of a small Georgia church produce, direct and market one movie-much less four theatrical released films- that keep impacting the lives of millions of people.

In this I am Second film Alex details the incredible story of how God worked to create and distribute the movies. He also reveals how God was convicting him in many of the same areas as the movie topics. His dilemma-if he could be obedient in making movies for God, could he also be obedient in making changes in his life, too?

God said something to me…it’s like he spoke to me so clearly that I heard him word for word. He said, “Alex would you rather have an easier road with less fruit or a harder road with more fruit.” And I was so stunned at that, I turned to my wife and I said, “ God just asked me a question” And she said, “what?” And I said, “God just asked me a question.” And she said, “well what did you say?” I said, “I do not know. I did not answer.”

As a boy, for years we did not even have a television. Our parents were pretty conservative, loved the Lord and wanted to …you know rightly protect us. We were able to see on occasion a movie, a family friendly movie at the theater. I remember being enamored with these huge stories on screen. The Raiders of the Lost Ark, the Star Wars movies, and somewhere around the age of 9 or 10 I started thinking that I must do this. Most of the stories that I made as a kid with our home video camera were “chase them down beat them up” movies. We had to have action. We had to have humor. We would show them to our family and neighborhood friends and they would laugh with us but the older I got I remember seeing how a good story would impact the audience. That was my wakeup call. That God could say, “ Alex, I can use your desire to do this for my purposes and do more with it than you ever thought possible if you trust me with it.”

I prayed about it. And God gave me this idea for a plot called Flywheel. It was about a used car salesman who would live one way in front of his family and church friends and another way behind the scenes. Men began responding to the story of Flywheel saying, “that’s me” on the screen. “that is me.” Then before we knew it, Blockbuster video had picked it up and put it in their stores nationwide. And I was excited and at the same time I was overwhelmed. Our Pastor Michael then said, “this may be an open door that God has given us. We may need to pray about continuing this avenue for ministry.”

That led us to our second movie Facing the Giants. I had no clue what was coming. God was about to teach us something hard, and yet amazing. We felt a very strong sense that God was saying, “Deal with faith.” Everyone has a giant fear, sense of failure, struggling with inferiority, or some ball and chain in their own life.“

We asked the question – Is God only worthy of being worship when he is doing good to you or is he worthy of being worshiped because he is God? I was excited about this message, and then we go knock on several doors of distributors, hoping that somebody will pick it up and release it theatrically.

No one was interested. They said, “ it’s a nice story.” “not really our cup of tea or something we feel like would work well enough to invest for a theatrical release.” So I was frustrated. And I said, “God I feel like you gave us this theme and this message and you took us down this road. And we have poured our heart and soul into this. We did this for you and now it is sitting on a shelf. No one is interested, why?”

God said to me, “Alex you made a movie that says that God is worth worshiping and serving whether you win or whether you lose. Will you do that with this film?” so we surrendered it to God and I died to a theatrical release.

Soon after that a music company we had asked permission to use a song in the film calls us. And they say to us, “not only can you use the song, but our parent company is interested in releasing your movie theatrically. “ We said, “Who is your parent company?” They said, “Sony.” The one door we had not knocked on. God opened a door we could not have opened. We did not even knock on their door.

Facing the Giants was released in several hundred movie theatres in fall of 2006. It did better than any of us expected. The marketing budget was small and the number of theaters was so far less than any other Hollywood movie, but the response was incredible. People were saying, “this is my giant , that’s my giant.” God had done the same thing in my life and watching him do it in so many other lives was so fulfilling.

As the platform expanded for us to tell these stories, as more theatres jumped on board, more ministries caught hold of what these movies could do for people. For some reason, the path got harder for us.

My time with my wife and my children began to lessen and began to pull on my own identity. Who am I? What am I supposed to be doing here? And it would only get harder from there.

As we continued praying, God impressed on us to make a film about a marriage totally surrendered to him. God gave us this concept for what we called the Love Dare. About a husband who’s marriage was failing and so he wanted out and his wife wanted out and the husband’s dad who had trusted God late in his life came to him and said, “don’t get divorced, yet, I want you to hold off for 40 days, before proceeding and I want you to apply these principles to your life and how you treat your wife for 40 days.”

So we make this movie Fireproof. And my brother, Stephen, and I start praying through, should we write this book The Love Dare for real. As we are working on this book, we find a publisher for it, but before it comes out, issues in my own marriage started to bubble up to the surface.

Some insecurity in my wife and some of her frustration that– because I was pouring so much of myself into something that was good- she felt in many ways neglected- put on the back burner.

I knew she loved me and I knew I loved her, but I was thinking “what is going on here?” I was writing a book and making a movie about how to have a Godly marriage and my own marriage was being stretched and pulled more than it ever had.

And initially that frustrated me. And I remember thinking, “ why can you not be on my team?” so we agreed to go to marital counseling. While we are in counseling this book the Love Dare on how to have a good marriage is being released. It is not that the Love Dare wasn’t true and didn’t work ‘cause they are biblical principles and I ended up doing it in my own marriage. But God stripped me down to the core and reminded me that just because I know truth in my head doesn’t mean that I have it all figured out in my own heart. That I needed him as much as anybody. I had to cling to his grace and his truth as much as I ever had.

After Fireproof we asked “God do you want us to make another film and if so what should it be about.” And after praying God directed us to fatherhood. I do not have to tell you what is going on with men in our culture. They are not stepping up the way they need to step up and I was not stepping up the way I needed to step up. It kind of freaked me out because I was thinking, “God why are you making me live out the movies that we are presenting. You did it in Giants and you did it in Fireproof.” It kind of unnerved me because in some ways I was not so sure I wanted to do another movie.

God kind of has a way of knocking the pride out of you. But he also has a way of using you, so as long he gives me the strength and the grace to tell another story. If He is there with me, I’ll do it.

My prayer is that Courageous grabs men by their throats and reaches into their hearts and sparks them to chase after God. We want to see God rock our culture with men stepping up, so I’ll carry that torch. My brother, Stephen, will carry that torch. If He helps me. And I am counting on it.

My name is Alex Kendrick and I am Second.

Has this message touched you in any way? Make the decision and follow Christ and be ready to be use in a magnificent way to glorify the name of the Lord.


John 1:12

But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God.

John 1:12 NLT


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