One of the most familiar of Bible passages, Psalm 23, was written by King David. As a shepherd in his youth he was quite familiar with the duties of caring for sheep. He writes from the viewpoint of a sheep and describes the confidence and contentment one has in the shepherd's care.
The relationship is likened to that of a sheep to its shepherd and because of whose sheep he is, the sheep finds provision and peace in the shepherd's loving attention. In such a relationship, the sheep lacks no good thing, finds comfort in green pastures and still waters. He is led along right paths and has no fear of evil.
There is the assurance of the shepherd's protection in that he will not be left alone, nor forsaken even in the 'valley of the shadow of death". He will have peace in the valley, even though there is the presence of enemies.
As a Believer in Christ, we can know the peace that passes understanding during the valleys of life. We are the sheep of His pasture and He is the Good Shepherd (John 10). We are not assured that we will not experience valley, but are comforted in knowing the presence of the shepherd in those valleys.
When I was a young boy, my dad was called to the home of a church member who was dying. It was early one summer evening, when we arrived, we were greeted by members of the family and others from our church. The children were instructed to stay outside so as no to disturb Sister Hattie. The evening was warm and as there was no air conditioning, the windows of the house were open. We could hear the prayers of those who had gathered and then, Sister Hattie's voice lifted in song, weak, but clearly, she sang the first verse and chorus of "Peace In The Valley". Others joined in as she passed sweetly from this life into the presence of her savior.
Though I was but a young boy, I understood the reason she could sing with such confidence as she died. She knew, not only the Psalm of the Shepherd, but also the Shepherd of the Psalm. He was with her, leading the way through the Valley of the Shadow of Death. He knew the way, for He had been there before and His shadow was cast behind Him as He led, for shadows follow after the Light...and there is no harm in His shadow.
"Peace in the Valley" was written by Thomas Dorsey in 1939. It was about the same time that Hitler brought War to Europe. Mr. Dorsey was riding by train through southern Indiana. Captivated by the serenity of the countryside, he scribbled the words to this song. It was published and sung widely in the 1960's by different country artists, including Elvis Presley.
If you know the Shepherd, you too, can have Peace In Your Valley.