The Lord is My . . . Surfer?


It wasn’t until I moved out to the country that I learned how big sheep can get and how stubborn they can be. My image of sheep was always the cute, little, hurt lamb Jesus had flung over His shoulder taking it back home. That or Mary’s little lamb whose fleece was white as snow. I now know that their fleece usually is not white as snow or very soft, for that matter, either.

When Jesus refers to himself as the Good Shepherd, I can appreciate the wonderful imagery, but I really do not understand all the ins and outs of being a shepherd. I now believe it is much harder than I originally supposed it to be. Perhaps, the closest thing I can compare it to is raising teenagers! Or taking 3 or more toddlers to the Walmart! There have been times I have wished for a sheepdog. Still, in our country, in our day in time, shepherding is kind of a lost art.

I remember back in college, my English professor gave the assignment of rewriting the 23rd Psalm in more modern, relevant language. Now, I do not suppose to ever perfect upon God’s perfectly written Word. But I understood the purpose of the assignment. If our Lord was to speak to me in terms to which I could totally relate, to what would He compare Himself?

As an 18 year old beach-bum wanna-be, surfing was my thing. If only Jesus could be my surf master. Ahh, that would be the life. Below is the (slightly revised) result of that assignment (Valley girl lingo was very much in style then, if I must date myself, so I have updated some of the lingo).

"The Lord is my . . . surfer?" by Kelly Guest (

Copyright 2017 Kelly Guest. All rights reserved.

The 23rd Psalm

written not by a shepherd boy turned king, but a beach bum wanna-be surfer girl

The Lord is my Surfer;

      I won’t miss a rad wave.

In beautiful sandy beaches, we stake our boards;

     into barrels, He leads me;

     my soul catches air.

He takes me to where the waves are cranking

     for He is Awesome.

Even though I get locked in,

     I ain’t clucked, for You bail me out.

On Your board with your hand outstretched

     I am still amped.

You spread the swells before me

     in the sight of all these hodads.

You wax up my board;

     the waves are firing.

Only charging and carving will I experience

     until I kick out;

I will have an epic day with my surfer

     in an endless summer.

Admittedly, it loses some of it majesticness in my translation (understatement of the year). Still, it speaks to me, in a Message Bible sort of way!

So how about you? If you had to rewrite the 23rd Psalm, what would Jesus be to you? Try it out. You may see Jesus is a different light.

Copyright 2017 Kelly Guest


About Author

God has given Kelly lots of wonderful opportunities to follow Him. She was a Dominican Sister of St. Cecilia in Nashville, an education coordinator for a Catholic Charities' program for pregnant teens, a middle school teacher, a director of religious education and is now a youth minister. Her most challenging and rewarding calling, though, is wife and mother of ten children. What she has learned, she blogs at


  1. Prov31wannabe on

    The Lord is my Knitter, into luxuriant fiber he leads me.
    The Lord is my Quilter, all my pieced points match up perfectly.
    The Lord is my Gardener, he will protect me from cabbage worms, drought and frost.
    The Lord is my baker: in the sight of mine enemies, my bread will still rise.
    The Lord is my Libarian: I shall dwell within the pages of His Word all the days of my life.

    Cool Exercise! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Kelly Guest on

    Forgive me for taking so long to respond – its been a week for 1st Comminion, Confirmation,
    and graduation. But I did want you to know that this was perfect . It made me smile!

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