Reflections on selected verses of Psalm 37:
Take delight in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord;
trust in him and he will do this:
He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn,
your vindication like the noonday sun.
Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
when they carry out their wicked schemes.
Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
do not fret – it leads only to evil.
Better the little the righteous have
than the wealth of many wicked.
The Lord makes firm the steps
of the one who delights in him.
Though he stumble, he will not fall,
for the Lord upholds him with his hand.
The mouths of the righteous utter wisdom,
and their tongues speak of what is just.
The law of God is in their hearts;
their feet do not slip.
As I delight in You, Lord, the desire of my heart is for more of You and less of me, for an ever-closer relationship with and dependence on You. These are desires You delight to fulfill.
As I make it my daily decision to commit everything to You, the righteousness You have placed in me in the Person of Your Holy Spirit can be brought to the surface. Your Presence can shine through, as welcome as the dawn after a long, dark night. What Jesus has done for me and in me will be my vindication. The Son will burn away all of Satan’s accusations against me.
Lord, help me to be still before You, to understand how important it is to listen for Your voice. Your Spirit will give the guidance I need, the comfort I crave; only then will I be secure and at peace. Teach me to wait patiently for You; not to push forward on my own path under my own steam out of panic or frustration or pride. Make me always mindful that Your timing is perfect; that Your answer will accomplish Your purposes, which are infinitely higher, wider and deeper than mine.
Remind me not to be surprised at the apparent success of people only out for themselves, who do terrible things without a shred of remorse. Satan tries to use these instances to make me angry or resentful; to plunge me into worry mode; to entice me to doubt You and Your goodness. Those thoughts can’t take me anywhere good; which is why Satan is so anxious to get me there. But I can stand on the truth that vengeance is best left to You, that Your justice will prevail, that evil will be repaid in full.
You have shown me that righteousness – being in right relationship with You – is true success, true wealth. In the end, it is the only thing that counts.
It’s walking in step with You that assures me of a firm footing. Even when I’m suddenly broadsided by trouble and start to stumble, You immediately reach out to take hold of me and keep me from falling.
Being constantly guided by Your Spirit is what gives me wisdom and the quiet courage to speak what is just and fair and honoring to You. Your Spirit brings Your Word to my mind at just the moment I need to apply it. All around me I see a self-absorbed culture perched precariously on the edge of a slippery slope; it’s Your Word and Your presence that gives me the traction I need to navigate it.