Psalms of Honesty and Truth
How many times have you been jolted from sleep because of a child’s cry, an unfamiliar noise, or merely nature calls. You don’t turn on the light because you don’t want to bother your mate sleeping beside you, so you stumble around in the dark. You kick the dresser, run into the door, stub your toe and mutter, “ouch”! It would have been better to turn on a light, right? Or, at least, use a light to guide your path because even a familiar pathway through your own home becomes somewhat treacherous in the dark.
What a wonderful passage to study and chew on for this first day of our new year! The Psalmist’s first words about God are “by your words I can see where I’m going…” We all want to see where we are going. We want to be assured of the path to get there. Must we keep traveling in the dark, cautiously guessing where to place our next step with a great risk of stumbling? A better plan might be to commit ourselves to follow God’s Word, walk by faith, allowing Him to throw a huge beam of Light on the path and committing to never turn back.
The Psalmist admits to falling apart at times…we all do. But God’s Words of wisdom, insight and understanding puts us back together and redirects us. I love the commitment statement at the end of this passage…what a mantra to begin again, a new year, even today, at this very hour. “I concentrate on doing exactly what you say–I always have and always will.”
Psalm 119:105-112, The Message
By your words I can see where I’m going;
they throw a beam of light on my dark path.
I’ve committed myself and I’ll never turn back
from living by your righteous order.
Everything’s falling apart on me, God;
put me together again with your Word.
Festoon me with your finest sayings, God;
teach me your holy rules.
My life is as close as my own hands,
but I don’t forget what you have revealed.
The wicked do their best to throw me off track,
but I don’t swerve an inch from your course.
I inherited your book on living; it’s mine forever—
what a gift! And how happy it makes me!
I concentrate on doing exactly what you say—
I always have and always will.
What do we learn?
–One of the ministries of the Holy Spirit is to bring God’s Word to our remembrance when we need it (John 14:25-26; 16:12-15), but we cannot remember what we have never heard and learned (v. 11; Heb. 5:12-14). The psalmist was taking risks, just as we all do as we walk through the minefields of this dark world, but he knew the Word would direct him.
–The ancient world did not have lights such as we have today; the people carried little clay dishes containing oil, and the light illuminated the path only one step ahead. We do not see the whole route at one time, for we walk by faith when we follow the Word. Each act of obedience shows us the next step, and eventually we arrive at the appointed destination.
Dear Heavenly Father, May the reading and studying of Your Word today be Light for our next step of obedience.
In Jesus Name, Amen