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Don’t Shepherd Yourself

By Ken and Jan Merop

Avery Countyken and Jan Merop Avery County


Self-help books abound.

It seems everyone has his or her own interpretation of how to promote or improve oneself.  But which is right?

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if there was one book that had proven itself over time?  Wouldn’t it be helpful to know people who actually testify to and exemplify life-change through following what it says in the book?

I know a man who continually points to a particular book, the people of the book, and, especially, the author of the book as the reason his life has turned around completely – for the better.  And I have known many others to say the same.

It all has to do with who a person decides to follow.  Who will be his shepherd?

I once heard it said that if you have the wrong shepherd, you will always be in want.  And if you are always in want, there is no fulfillment, satisfaction, or rest.

But, with the right shepherd to guide, lead and direct one’s life, there is no want.

In Psalm 23: 1, NKJV, we read, “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.”

The Lord God Almighty, the Creator of all, the Savior who came to personally give to all who believe in his salvation from eternal death and life eternal with him – this is the Lord who is my shepherd.  Therefore, I shall not want.

He, who holds the universe and my next breath in his hands “…makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside still waters; He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake; …though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me; You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever” says the rest of Psalm 23.

So, if in the Bible I can meet the Author and have him become my personal Savior and Lord ~ my Shepherd ~ then I have found all I need.  Looking at each phrase in Psalm 23 we see rest, refreshment, renewal, right living, safekeeping, and courage, never be alone, consolation, provision, blessing, abundance, now and for eternity with God.

No other book can compare.

No other shepherd will do.  Selah

Pastoral Portrayal

Come stroll the perimeter of this meadow.

In this rural setting, imagine a shepherd with his sheep.

How peaceful and nourishing a place to

“lie down in green pastures.”

Walk it again in the opposite direction

And restore body and soul.

“The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want…

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me

all the days of my life and I will dwell

in the house of the Lord forever.”

Psalm 23: 1and 6

ken and jan merop pastoral portrayal


Ken and Jan love residing in the mountains of Avery County.  Visit Jan’s new blog, Journeying with Jan.  Ken’s photos can be seen at


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