Valley of the Shadow of Death...v.6

Have you noticed that if you want to do something that isn't good,

all you have to do is fall into it?

by Lura Langenback

© 4/21/02

Psalm 23:6

"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."

Imagine, if you will, what the word 'goodness' actually means. The dictionary definition is this: 'in man is not a mere passive quality, but the deliberate preference of right to wrong, the firm and persistent resistance of all moral evil, and the choosing and following of all moral good.' Now add to that the fact that God is a greater 'goodness' than man can possibly be. He chooses to be goodness. Not a passive act, deliberate.

The act of goodness is a decision. Have you noticed that if you want to do something that isn't good, all you have to do is fall into it? BUT if you do want to do something right, it requires a decision? It's a choice, a life determination. Think about choices for a moment. Many times we have no clue as to what to chose but we do so based on what we feel, what we are wearing, what the weather is like and so on. Even our most pressing needs are resolved based on right or wrong choices. It is so easy to chose wrong because we FEEL like having a pizza when the worst thing we can do is have it. So easy to date that good looking guy/girl because they are so popular. Those are choices but are they right for you? Only God can tell you that. However, choosing goodness is a sure thing because God promises it. Surely. Without a doubt. Done deal. You can't get any better than that!

Now imagine the goodness, that you chose, following you ALL the days of your life. What a blessing that would be! What am I saying here? Look at the verse closely. "Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life". Remember what 'surely' means? It is a guaranteed deal. It will happen with an absolute certainty. There is no doubt about it in any way, shape or form. That's a comforting thought. Imagine that this 'goodness' is so stuck to you that you can't shake it off. Oh do I LOVE that! If that were all the promise, I would be so blessed but it gets even better.

"and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever." What does 'forever' mean? Without end. Constant, continuing, eternity. We are promised that we will dwell in God's house from now until..........forever. What more do you want? Living in the house with the Creator of all things for eternity is such a wonderful promise that I can't wrap my mind around it totally. But it sounds so good to me. What a blessing.

For just one more moment, let's go back and take a look at the whole Psalm. We are promised that the Lord is our Shepherd, that He gives us peace in ways we would not otherwise have it, He restores us to wholeness, leads us in the right paths. He walks WITH us through the valleys, through the shadows of death and He comforts us in that time. He prepares a table of goodies right there in the presence of our enemies and anoints our heads with the oil of the Lord. Then He tells us that His Goodness will follow us all our lives. One more promise. We will be allowed to dwell in God's house forever.

This is shouting time to me! Please talk to the Lord. Seek Jesus today.

Click here for verse 5 of the study on Psalm 23.