Psalm 23 is one of the most recognisable psalm of David. And there is good reason why many believers through the ages have been deeply impacted by what he wrote. In beautiful fashion, David likened the Lord to being a shepherd. While God is majestic, glorious, and powerful in every way, He is also personal, near and loving.
If the Lord is our Shepherd, then we are like sheep, in constant need of His leading and guidance. What did David mean when he wrote about the restoration of his soul in verse 3? Well, the most essential point he is stating is that God is the only person that can replenish, refresh, and refill our souls.
Isn’t that a wonderful revelation? Some might respond and say “But my soul does not require the Lord’s restoration.” My hope is to impress upon your heart that we all need to be restored, even if we assume that we do not. It is a common story of many who finally came to the Lord in true salvation. They once lived a self-ordered life. They once made their own decisions by their own powers. They once were not broken over sin. They once viewed God as an encumbrance or redundant.
It is at the point where one encounters Lord’s presence in one’s life that everything changes. That is why David writes so passionately in his psalms of worship unto God! He has communion and fellowship with God till everything is centered around the Lord. Let me offer just 3 reasons why God has to restore our souls.
1. In our brokenness over our sin
When we sin against God, our conscience reacts. We feel guilt and shame. In the moments leading up to true confession, there is a brokenness in our soul that we have sinned against our Almighty God! David had to be restored in his soul towards God when he committed adultery and murder. Peter had to be restored by Christ when he denied Him three times. Restoration to the heart of God is a precious thing.
2. When we are sinned against
Sin leaves its mark even on the saints of God. When people sin against us, it can unsettle our spirits and even cause spiritual doubts for a season. The danger is to allow their sin tempt us to also sin in return. That is why Jesus taught us not to repay evil for evil, but to do good even to our enemies. Perhaps you have been terribly wounded and scarred from something that happened to you, it is time to turn fully to the Lord. He can restore your soul with healing balm and mercy. He can bring immeasurable joy and gladness to your heart!
3. Restoration of soul points to the eternal restoration of the Lord
One of the great assurances we can have when our souls are restored presently is the full confidence of God’s promise of eternal restoration. The promise of eternal life is more than just a ticket to heaven. It is a restoration of the Garden of Eden. It is the restoration of redeemed humanity! No longer will true believers be shackled by feeble flesh but clothed in garments of righteousness!
May we look to Christ as our good Shepherd to restore our souls and to lead us in paths of righteousness for His Name’s sake!