The LORD is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name. Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and Your staff protect and comfort me. You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies. You honor me by anointing my head with oil. My cup overflows with blessings. Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life, and I will live in the house of the LORD forever.
Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. – James 5:16 (KJV)
I opened my mail today from World Vision and saw it was regarding the current COVID19 crisis and ways they are involved in helping the especially vulnerable. The letter concluded with the latter half of this verse and it felt significant and particularly meaningful to me: a reminder that prayer matters. There are many, many people all around the world being affected by COVID19, some of them nearby and some of them far away. It can sometimes be hard to know exactly how to help, especially when many are sheltering in place, but one way is to pray. And then follow the Lord’s leading.
Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
– John 14:1-3 (KJV)
These treasured verses have been made into a beautiful little melody which I remember singing many times when I was younger. Here is my a capela rendition. Apologies, I’m no vocal artist and the recording is less than stellar, but you can get an idea of the tune…
God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. Therefore we will* not fear, though the earth do change, And though the mountains be shaken into the heart of the seas; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, Though the mountains tremble with the swelling thereof. Selah – Psalm 46:1-3
*I grew up reading the NIV (New International Version), so I am most familiar with that English translation, and it has remained my primary Bible reference to this day. However, because I have been posting parts of the Bible on the internet, I recently began to wonder about copyright laws, and to ask myself exactly how much of any particular translation I can publish – whether in type or audio – without asking permission. I looked up some different versions to find out which ones were copyright free or in the public domain. One of them was the ASV (American Standard Version), so I decided to post that version today. For a moment, I thought there was a typo on the Bible website I was looking at because it said “will we not fear” (which, upon reasearch, I discovered many translations do), instead of “we will not fear” (which is how NIV and several other translations word it). For the record, after some thought, I switched the two words to “we will” in the quote above.