The Overflow

By Campus Missionary Mary Rowley

Based on Psalm 23

Psalm 23 is one of those passages that all Christians know. It’s comforting in trying times and encouraging during hardship. As I look at it today, attempting to see the familiar words with fresh eyes, what strikes me is not only that God provides for us, but how he provides for us.


God understands our basic needs: shelter, food, drink. However, he doesn’t give us the bare minimum of those needs. Using the shepherd analogy found in the psalm, our shepherd provides us with green pastures when brown ones would do. He leads us to still waters instead of swift-flowing streams. He cares for our souls, not simply our bodies.


Furthermore, when there is danger, he doesn’t equip us and abandon us. No, he walks through it with us and guides us when we don’t see the threat. He even protects and provides for us and our basic needs in the midst of the peril.


There is one phrase in the psalm that sums it up completely: “My cup overflows.” That’s how God takes care of us, his sheep. He gives us so many blessings that we can’t contain them all. They naturally spill over. From that overflow, we can minister to others and say, “Come meet my Shepherd. He’ll take care of you.”