PSALM 23 - A PARAPHRASE
When Reverend Don Dowling came to St. Ippolyts a while ago he introduced us to his paraphrase of the 23rdPsalm as follows:
‘The shepherd was a familiar figure in Bible lands and times. However, it is somewhat different for us. Most of us live in towns where we rarely see a sheep. And even in the country the practice of sheep rearing has markedly changed. Nowadays in Britain a shepherd is typically someone who herds sheep from a quad bike with dogs! Climate and topography are quite different too. Consequently I have tried to paraphrase the psalm in a way that is less dependent on images of sheep and shepherding. Whether it works you can judge for yourself.’
The Lord, I am safe with you;
You do not let me down.
You watch over me when I sleep.
You refresh me when I’m awake.
You are my provider.
When I am weary you sustain me,
When lost you put me back on track.
Constant in your loving care
You are my guardian and my guide.
At times the darkness would overwhelm me
Were it not for your presence, Lord.
You walk with me in the night of fear
So I don’t fall or stumble.
You are my protector.
When I’m threatened by danger on all sides
There you fill my cup of blessing to the brim;
Making me the guest of honour at your feast.
You are my gracious host.
All my life I will know your goodness
All my life I will experience your mercy,
For I will live as your child in your family.
You are my home and my Father.