In the Word: In the Valley of the Shadow of Idi Amin

An African Perspective on Psalm 23.
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The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures;
he leads me beside still waters;
he restores my soul.
He leads me in right paths for his name's sake.

Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
I 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 goodness and mercy shall follow
me all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
my whole life long.

--Psalm 23 (NRSV)

Young Semoine was only 12 when he had to confront a lion. He was in the company of six boys who were grazing a herd of 300 cows in the Maasai Mara game reserve. The other boys scuttled away when the lion surprised them, but Semoine hesitated. The lion was about to strike Reoyi, the cow Semoine had milked that morning, and he was not going to see it die! He threw his spear and stabbed the lion in the chest. The wounded beast turned on the boy and struck his right leg, breaking it instantly before mauling his head. Then it limped away without touching the cattle.

The boy might have died, but an emergency flying doctor's service airlifted him to a hospital in Nairobi, where he spent nearly two months receiving medical treatment. From his hospital bed, Semoine declared he would challenge lions again if they attacked his father's herd.

In rural Africa, people take good care of their domestic animals at great expense to themselves. Shepherds move for miles with their animals in search of lush pasture, salt licks, and watering holes. These are the same items of survival sought after by the grazers among the wild animals such as zebras, buffaloes, and gazelles. Unfortunately, ...

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