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Reviewed by Asher Syed for Readers' Favorite
Known: A Study of the Good Shepherd by Lisa Derhake is a ten-week guided lesson and devotional on the intricacies of Psalm 23. “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.” This is possibly the most well-known line of the Bible, even for those who know very little or nothing at all about the Bible. The second most well-known is likely to be “...though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death...”. The fact that both appear in the same psalm and the absolute importance of understanding Psalm 23 in its truest, fullest and richest meaning is where Derhake takes us. She incorporates some profoundly honest personal perspectives, drawing from her own life and relying on the direct word of God from this and other scriptures to make a reader whole in the love and glory of the Good Shepherd.
I initially found myself wishing that Known by Lisa Derhake had come out a couple of years ago when in-person Bible study was ham-strung by a global pandemic, but soon recovered in the knowledge that we are on God's time, not our own, and devotionals and lessons will come to us when that time is right. So here we are today, and I have never loved homework quite so much. Yes...homework! Derhake gives us homework! For me, the turning point where I stopped feeling uncomfortable and started feeling that I was worthy of this information was Chapter 6, Righteousness in The Shepherd. The correlation between this feeling of inadequacy and what makes it an emotion that falls short is made clear when Derhake writes, “By declaring you righteous through your faith in Christ, He justifies you.” Wherever you are on your journey, Known is a wonderful space to be for ten weeks that could very well be life-changing.