We have finally come to the final segment of this wonderful Psalm. We have missed a day here or there, but that is okay. Life is like that. The important thing is that we keep moving forward in our walk with the Lord. I hope that this devotional has encouraged you to do just that.
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In this final segment, the psalmist summarizes his position. He ends the chapter with a most interesting verse, which we will spend a little time examining.
Section 22 (TAU)
Psalms 119:169-176 Let my cry come near before thee, O LORD: give me understanding according to thy word.
Let my supplication come before thee: deliver me according to thy word.
My lips shall utter praise, when thou hast taught me thy statutes.
My tongue shall speak of thy word: for all thy commandments are righteousness.
Let thine hand help me; for I have chosen thy precepts.
I have longed for thy salvation, O LORD; and thy law is my delight.
Let my soul live, and it shall praise thee; and let thy judgments help me.
I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek thy servant; for I do not forget thy commandments.
One interesting thing that I noticed about this passage is that there is an even distribution of personal pronouns, and the word “let,” at the beginning of the verses. Four times the psalmist makes a declaration about himself; and four times he asks God to move on his behalf. I think this is a beautiful picture of the Christian life.
I may have the best intentions when it comes to my walk with God in His Word. I may have the most sincere desire to serve Him faithfully. It is not wrong for me to declare this intention, especially in prayer. However, like the psalmist, we must recognize our utter inability to do fulfill these intentions apart from the helping hand of God. He gives us the strength each day to do what we desire to do for Him.
In the psalmist’s case, that was praising Him, telling others about God’s Word, and walking with Him. This wouldn’t be a bad life philosophy. Imagine is our prayer daily was, “Lord, let me walk with you today, and I will praise you and tell others about you and your Word.”
One of the greatest hindrances to a consistent walk with the Lord is our tendency to be distracted and to wander off the path. The psalmist recognized this tendency. In the final verse he says that though he is a servant, he has gone astray, like a lost sheep. He cannot find his own way back, so he asks God to seek him.
Dear ones, sometimes I get off the path. I know I have wandered, but I am not entirely sure how to get back where I desire to be. I get so caught up in the brambles and thorns that it seems there is no good way to turn; but there is. I can turn my eyes upward. God sees where I am, and knows how to get me back. Have you ever been driving without paying attention? Especially in the days before GPS, this was more common occurence in my life. I missed the exit I needed, and maybe drove for an hour or more before I realized I was not where I should have been. It wasn’t on purpose, but it didn’t change it.
I do not believe that every time a child of God wanders out of the way that there is something nefarious in it. I think sometimes we just get distracted, and look up on day to realize that we are not where we should be. Just like a lost sheep, we have gone astray.
God knows where we are. He can find us and get us on the right way again. Let’s make this our prayer today as we close this series of devotionals.
Heavenly Father, sometimes I recognize that I have gone astray. It isn’t even always on purpose. Sometimes I just look up from my busy life and realize that I have wandered out of the way you desire for me, and the way that I truly desire to walk. I don’t always know how to get back. Father, when I wander, please seek me. Pursue me, even when I don’t yet know I have wandered, and bring me back to your way. Help me to walk with you today, and I will praise you and tell others about you. In Jesus name, amen.