Prayer of Presence:
Almighty God, in you, is hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. Open my eyes that I may see the wonders of your Word; and give me the grace that I may clearly understand and freely choose the way of your wisdom; through Christ my Lord. Amen.
Scripture: Today’s reading is from Psalm 119:9-16
How can young people keep their way pure? By guarding it according to your word. With my whole heart I seek you; do not let me stray from your commandments. I treasure your word in my heart, so that I may not sin against you. Blessed are you, O LORD; teach me your statutes. With my lips, I declare all the ordinances of your mouth. I delight in the way of your decrees as much as in all riches. I will meditate on your precepts, and fix my eyes on your ways. I will delight in your statutes; I will not forget your word.
The psalmist asks a rhetorical question, “How can young people keep their way pure? Meaning, how can one conduct one’s life in the ways of God expressed and taught through God’s laws, decrees, word, precepts, promises, commandments, ordinances and statutes? The goal of such a pursuit is to draw near to God, live a happy life, and have a heart at peace with God and neighbor.
Walking in God’s ways or following God’s precepts, asserts the psalmist, produces a right mind and right action that leads to blessing and happiness (Ps. 119:1-3). Conversely, not walking in God’s ways or straying from God’s commands produces a crooked mind, which leads one on crooked paths and into sin and trouble.
With singleness of eye and heart toward God, Jesus came to fulfill the law of God and to show us how to live in the ways of God through his life, words, and deeds. He promised that those who conduct themselves according to God’s ways and teach others to do the same would be called great in the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 5:17-19)
Questions for Reflection:
Prayer Focus: For the grace to walk in God’s ways.
O God, your glory is always to have mercy. Be gracious to all who have gone astray from your ways, and bring them again with penitent hearts and steadfast faith to embrace and hold fast the unchangeable truth of your Word, Jesus Christ you Son, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, forever and ever. Amen.
(The Book of Common Prayer, U.S.A., 20th Cent. Alt)