There is a hotel chain known as the Comfort Inn. Everything they do is calculated to make you comfortable. After a hard day and many miles on the road, they want you to kick back and relax in the comfort of their motel room. Well, did you know that our Lord is the ultimate “comfort inn?”
In Psalm 23, at the end of verse 4, it says, “Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me.” Now we all need comfort from the hassles and strains of everyday living. So it is good to know that the heavenly Shepherd has our comfort in mind.
This word, “comfort” is a Hebrew verb that means “to have compassion; to console; to pity.” Strong’s Concordance says it originally meant “to sigh, or breathe a sigh of relief.” Can’t you just see yourself sinking back into your favorite comfortable chair after a long day, and breathing a sigh of relief? Well, that’s the idea of this word.
Now it is the rod and staff of the shepherd that brings a sigh of relief to the sheep – that gives them a sense of security and well-being so that they are comfortable in their surroundings. You see, the shepherd’s rod is a symbol of his power and authority that protects the sheep, and the shepherd’s staff is a symbol of his love and affection that provides for the sheep. So these two instruments of the shepherd’s care are the things the sheep look to for their comfort.
Well, our Divine Shepherd has given to us two instruments of His care. He has given to us His Word, which protects and nourishes us; and He has given to us the ministry of His Holy Spirit, to guide and instruct us. As we read His Word in dependence upon His Holy Spirit, we also are comforted and encouraged. So, kick back and relax. Breathe a sigh of relief – The Shepherd is here!
“Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me.”
Now you know the real meaning of the word.
Hey – Don’t let tension ruin your life. Relax! Get your eyes on the Shepherd.