Psalms – Prayers of Honesty and Praise
It is this time of year when the weather can turn ugly pretty quickly. A white out can block our view of the road as we drive in the daylight hours. Driving in a white out in the dark can be deadly…without the two beams of light on the front of our vehicles.
I will never forget the time I was traveling back to Indiana after completing a leadership training event in Pennsylvania. Let me first explain that this state, unlike our own state of Indiana, is NOT flat. It is hilly and mountainous. The roads are curvy not straight. The turnpike is dangerous without inclement weather conditions and road hazards. The view, however, is beautiful as you look over the edge to the valleys below UNLESS it is nighttime, snowy and a white out occurs as you travel. This happened to me.
All of a sudden I came to a place where I couldn’t see the road. The snow covered every sign of what was the road. I couldn’t even see the guard rails! The snow kept coming. I prayed, actually cried, out to God for help. I felt that stopping was not an option because I didn’t know what was behind me and I didn’t know what I was pulling into that might cause me to slide over the edge.
A semi truck, whose driver was apparently used to quick rising snow storms, passed me by as if I were standing still. A voice in my head, said, “Follow his lights.” Since pulling over and quitting this drive seemed more dangerous, I obeyed and followed the truck lights that were bright enough to give me an idea of where the road was taking me. My hotel for the evening was only an hour away. Surely we (God, me and the truck) can make it.
Following the lights of this truck whose driver seemed so assured was treacherous for me. He was going much faster than I felt comfortable with but I followed anyway with white knuckles gripping the steering wheel. I prayed throughout this “ride” and a calm came over me so I could stay the course. Okay, God, we’re doing this.
As I came closer to my exit to get off for the night and rest, I noticed our “guide” was slowing down. He was taking me to the same exit! He got off the road and I followed him for a much needed respite and refreshment.
Yes, there is a sermon here. In fact if you read between the lines of my harrowing experience, there are many lessons of trust and obey. The writer of our passage in Psalm 119 seems to have traveled with God down his own treacherous roads. He also knows Who lights the way. I love it! I love God and the way He works! I love God’s Word to us!
Psalm 119, 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.
FROM THE HEART…
As I write this, Randy and I are preparing to travel to new territories where God is already at work in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. Yes, we have been there for a short trip but now we will go and live there for four months to learn, to teach, to grow, trust and obey. We know God is with us, for us, behind us, in front of us and beside us. That is a promise we will cling to as we work with others who have been invited to God’s work in that place.
“By God’s words, we can see where we’re going; they throw a beam of light on our dark path.”
We have committed to this work and won’t turn back now.
Our lives are in God’s hands. We pray that His message will forever be in our hearts, minds and souls and will tumble excitedly and expectantly from our lips. He is our Light and our Salvation. Whom shall we fear but God Himself?
“We concentrate on doing exactly what you say…we always have and always will.”
In Jesus Name, Amen