August 2023 – The month of Divine Preservation
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For You are with me…. Psalm 23:4
We praise the name of the Lord, who is a great God above all other gods for bringing us to August, the 8th month of the year 2023. Psalm 23, the Good Shepherd Psalm, has been our anchor Bible guide for this year. Meanwhile, we have discussed, The Lord is my Shepherd I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the path of righteousness. For His name’s sake; Psalm 23:1-3.
This month of August, by the grace of God, we shall continue with ‘Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For You are with me…,’ Psalm 23:4.
My husband and I traveled to Israel a couple of weeks ago, where we noticed that the terrain of that land is- made up of mountain ranges. And where you have mountains, you also have valleys. There are Tour Guides who know the area and the important places to visit. They guide adventurers and tourists to where to go and not to go, just as a Shepherd leads his sheep. In order to get to the rich pastures of the mountains, the shepherd takes his sheep through the valleys. While grazing the sheep, the shepherd is constantly watching his sheep and looking out for predators that are hiding to ambush their prey in deep and steep areas of the valley floors. These areas can be called the “Valley of the Shadow of Death” because death lies in wait there for any sheep that misses its way.
David, the author of this psalm passed through many valleys in his lifetime. There was a time he was a shepherd boy, he fought against lions and bears. There was the time he faced Goliath; he was also a fugitive, running away from King Saul who wanted to kill him, and his son Absalom also chased him out of the kingdom. These were valleys of the shadows of death for he could have been killed in any of the occurrences, but the Lord preserved his life wherever he went. 2 Samuel 8:6.
David did not fear his valleys because the Lord was with him. God was with others too who went through the valley of the shadow of death. The Lord was with Peter in his shadow of death in Acts 12 and God was present with Paul when he was stoned and left for dead. God gave them courage and peace in the dangerous and desperate hours of their lives.
We all face the shadow of death every day of our lives. The Bible says, there is only one step between life and death. It is God who preserves our going out and our coming in, Psalm 121:8. Difficult times in our lives such as times of sickness, any kind of accident, financial loss, shame, betrayal, or aging; when we experience the loss of a loved one, and failure, are all shadows of death. We can go through our valleys with confidence, and assurance of peace because the Lord is with us. Our trust in the Lord is that He can preserve us, spirit, soul, and body. 1 Thessalonians 5:23 in NKJV says Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
What do you need to do to be divinely preserved?
1. 1. Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shall be saved and your household.
2. 2. Walk in holiness and righteousness.
3. 3. Fear not, but fear and put your trust in God through prayers.
4. 4. Let the word of God be your guide.
5. 5. Praise God for past victories. Joshua 24:17 For the LORD our God is He who brought us and our fathers up out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage, who did those great signs in our sight, and preserved us in all the way that we went and among all the people through whom we passed.
Father, thank you for past victories, for preserving me to see the month of August 2023. Father, please preserve my spirit, my soul, and my body. Father, please preserve my family. Father, please preserve my destiny to fulfill your purpose in Jesus’ mighty name.
Welcome to the month of August 2023, the month of Divine Preservation, may the Lord preserve your spirit, soul, and body blameless unto the day of Christ in Jesus’ name.
Yours in Him,
Pastor Lillian Haastrup
October 1, 2023
September 1, 2023