Everyone in a town came to a banquet to hear an amazing actor recite poetry, sing, and eloquently display his skills. He did several pieces after everyone had eaten and everyone was very impressed. Then he asked if anyone had any requests. An old man in the back stood up and weakly said that he would like to hear the actor recite Psalm 23. The actor said that he knew this piece and that he would only do it on one condition: if the old man would recite it after him. The actor vigorously and powerfully recited the Psalm. At the end everyone clapped and gave a standing ovation.
The old man had to follow that. He began and in his voice that was cracking at times and with the weariness of many trials, he recited the Psalm. At the end there were no applause, but there was not a dry eye in the banquet hall, as everyone was crying. Later someone asked the actor what he thought of the old man’s recitation. The actor replied, “I knew the Psalm, but that man knows the Shepherd.”
The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the darkest valley, 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 overflows.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.