He makes me lie down in green pastures, [New International Version] Psalm 22:3
Sometimes the Lord brings you to such a place of peace and rest that you can do nothing else but enjoy the sunshine and peace of His presence! His very presence makes you or causes you to lie down in His peaceful pastures. However, as with sheep, sometimes we are distraught or agitated or distracted and we find it hard to be still, to rest and be quiet, it’s then that the word makes takes on another form! The Shepherd has to deal with what is causing the problem and what is troubling the sheep and stopping it having a break! Here’s what Phillip Keller has to say.
The strange thing about sheep is that because of their very make-up, it is almost impossible for them to be made to lie down unless four requirements are met. Owing to their timidity they refuse to lie down unless they are free of all fear. Because of the social behavior within a flock, sheep will not lie down unless they are free from friction with others of their kind.
If tormented by flies or parasites, sheep will not lie down. Only when free of these pests can they relax. Lastly, sheep will not lie down as long as they feel in need of finding food. They must be free from hunger. It is significant that to be at rest there must be a definite sense of freedom from fear, tension, aggravations and hunger. The unique aspect of the picture is that it is only the sheepman himself who can provide release from these anxieties. It all depends upon the diligence of the owner, whether or not his flock is free of disturbing influences.
When we examine each of these four factors that affect sheep so severely, we will understand why the part the owner plays in their management is so tremendously important. It is actually he who makes it possible for them to lie down, to rest, to relax, to be content, and quiet, and flourishing.
So if we’re struggling to find peace and rest, we have to rely on our Good Shepherd to provide all that we need to enter that place of rest. Someone has quoted regards insomnia ‘DON’T COUNT SHEEP, TALK TO THE SHEPHERD!’ I would say that about every situation. If you have a problem, need or a situation you can’t resolve, then talk to the Good Shepherd, Jesus!
Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. [1 Peter 5:7 New Living Translation]