“Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.”–Psalm 23:5
Psalm 23:5 shows how far a shepherd will go because he cares for his sheep. “Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies.” The higher in elevation a flock goes, the more dangerous it becomes because of the predators. But the shepherd goes before the sheep and clears the way.
“Thou anointest my head with oil.” Flies often pester sheep, and they irritate their nose so much, a sheep will beat their head against anything just to ease the aggravation. At times, the sheep sends itself into such a frenzy, it kills itself just to find respite. But the shepherd tenderly rubs oil into his sheep’s nose to bring relief to the sheep.
“My cup runneth over.” Often, when sheep were led to a well, an under-shepherd would quickly draw a scoop of water, just enough for a quick drink. But when the shepherd led his sheep to a well, he drew an overflowing cup or bucket full of water – for each sheep. The affection that the shepherd has for his sheep is such that he spends the time to allow each sheep to drink from him.
Psalm 23:5 shows this beautifully tender picture of a shepherd that cares so much for his sheep, he clears the way of predators, he helps ease irritation, and he allows the sheep to drink from the effort of his hands. “How much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?” (Matthew 7:11)
Submitted by Emily Ertley
Daily Reading: Lamentations 3-5
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