Psalm 23:4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no evil: for you are with me, your rod and staff they comfort me.
Covid 19, the election, racial unrest, protests and a very rainy summer of 2020 have caused many of us to feel fearful. However; 2018 was more fearful year for me. In early January I was diagnosed with lobar breast cancer. By February Paul and I were in Seattle at Swedish Hospital seeing a breast surgeon, an oncologist, a genetic counselor and undergoing a battery of tests. My team recommended I have 17 weeks of chemo hopefully to shrink the tumor, then surgery, and finally 32 treatments of radiation. In a short time I had a port in place and chemo began. We were hopeful but also fearful.
On one of my good days between chemo treatments, Pal and I took a break and went to Pike's Place Market to distract us from cancer, chemo and doctors. At one of the little booths there were rocks with a saying engraved on them. One of the rocks with the saying, The Lord is My Shepherd jumped into my hands. Paul bought it. It became our 'mantra'. Almost every night we would say Psalm 23 together. As we obsorbed the words we found a sense of peace and an absense of fear. On a walk in our neighborhood the Lord led us to Grace Methodist Church. The people welcomed us as family and their prayers and friendship brought us peace and hope. Recently I read a story about the hymn He Leadth Me which was written during the Civil War when things looked dark and fearful. As a child I often heard my Father singing this hymn as he did his early morning chores on the farm. I realize that Psalm 23 has brought me a sense of peace and hope for most of my life. As you read this Psalm may it calm your fears and give you a sense of peace. He leads and walks with us on our journey even when it includes a pandemic.