Boundary Lines in Pleasant Places
Sherry Kendrick, Guest Writer
The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance (Psalm 16:6).
This is my favorite verse in the Psalm. “The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.” The lines in this Psalm would have been about land portions. The land would be the inheritance that God is giving King David. David saw that God was protecting and providing for him within those boundary lines. I am learning that God provides and protects me in the boundary lines He has given me. I have a “Miss Judy” lamb. It is an endowed gift given to every baby born in our church by an elder in honor of his wife, Judy, who gave this gift to children in our church until she went to heaven. When Mike died, our Wednesday midweek kids program was studying about Jesus being our good shepherd. During the week before Mike’s memorial service, I invited one of my spiritual moms, Edie, her husband, and her daughter, Kristin, with her family to come share a meal with us. As we were eating, Kristin’s oldest son, Bryson, brought me a present to open. I opened the card he had made first. It said, “Miss Sherry, I want you to have my Miss Judy lamb so you will remember Jesus is your good shepherd too.” My heart was comforted by this gift. I rejoiced at the connection of the gift. This grandchild of my spiritual mom was ministering to me! This child that I have the privilege of teaching was showing me he understood what we had been teaching him. But most of all, this little one was giving me a gift from my Heavenly Father to remind me of His presence with me. My Miss Judy lamb plays Jesus Loves Me and it sleeps in my bed. Jesus is indeed my good shepherd and His pasture, for me, is my boundary line that He has drawn in pleasant places. Within His pasture, I am safe to grieve deeply. There is comfort as I weep and wail in my Shepherd’s arms. Healing will begin to take place in this pasture as He walks with me. As we walk together in the pasture, He provides my daily needs - my home, my food, and my employment. And just as importantly, He assures me of my calling and my purpose in daily living. In this safe pasture, I can make the adjustments and changes that follow death. I look around and He has also provided a community of sheep surrounding me. My family and close friends and my church family are here in this pleasant place to comfort me and care for me. It is indeed a beautiful inheritance.
Grief brings an interesting combination of feelings. Weeping exists with rejoicing. Thankfulness exists with sorrow. Gratitude exists with deep pain. In the boundary lines of this pasture, I am free to have all of these emotions. One of my favorite quotes of this year is from author Kenneth Haugk, “In a sense, grieving is actually a show of faith. We are trusting God to hold us in our most vulnerable time when our feelings are raw, our life is in pieces and our strength is gone. If that isn’t faith, I’m not sure what is.” Let your Good Shepherd hold you as you grieve deeply and worship deeply all at the same time!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sherry Kendrick has a degree in elementary education from East Tennessee State University and over 30 years of experience in Christian education, children’s ministry, and public school elementary education. She loves children’s curriculums and tends to collect them. Sherry has lived in Naples, Florida for 32 years and currently serves as the Children’s Director of Covenant Church of Naples. Sherry was married to Mike Kendrick, a PCA pastor for 36 years. She has been a widow since February 2018. She is blessed with 3 grown children and one grandchild.
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Originally published Thursday, 19 May 2022.