Dear Holy Trinity Members and Friends
One of the appointed lessons for this past Sunday – Good Shepherd Sunday – was Psalm 23. In the Old Testament God Himself was the Shepherd of Israel. The 23rd Psalm begins, “The LORD is my shepherd . . .” In the Old Testament the word LORD in capital letters is the way that the letters YHWH, the initials for the Hebrew name of God, are translated.
In describing the LORD as a shepherd, David wrote about his own experience because he had spent his early years caring for sheep.
David begins the psalm by describing how God fully provides for the needs of His sheep – “I shall not want” because He shall provide for the needs of those under His care. He provides for our needs. I encourage you to continue turning to Him to provide for your needs.
Even though we “walk through the valley of the shadow of death” – the Coronavirus Pandemic – we “fear no evil” because God is with us. We do not walk through this valley alone. “Your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” God is always present in the valleys of life to comfort us with His care.
Psalm 23 shows how God cares for us like a shepherd cares for the sheep. God leads us, gathers us, feeds us, heals us, and continues to draw us back to himself.
May we find continuing comfort in this familiar psalm as we live in the “new normal”.
I hope these weekly communications bring some spiritual encouragement as we await the day when we can return to corporate worship with joyful and new hearts that have changed as a result of the pandemic from which we are emerging much like a butterfly coming out of its cocoon.
We are emerging from our cocoons with the anticipation of, once again, praising God in the beauty of His sanctuary. May our hearts grasp the magnitude of God’s grace as we look forward to celebrating our Creator and Sustainer.
I continue to receive words of encouragement regarding our worship services on social media and my weekly communiques. I encourage you to continue to stay in His Word and pray for one another and our leaders, for their burden is great.
May God be gracious and merciful to each of us.
In Christian love,
Pastor Pentti Maki