Reflections on Psalm 119: 137-176
You are righteous, lord; everything You say and do is unfailingly right, and You can be trusted absolutely. I’ve worn myself out trying to convey that truth to people who don’t want to hear it. They ignore me just as they ignore You.
Your promises have been thoroughly tested in my own experience, Father. You’ve never left me or ignored me or short-changed me. You’ve kept on loving me when I’ve been unlovable to others and even to myself. You’ve continued to provide for me when I’ve wavered into worry instead of worship. You’ve had mercy on me when what I deserved was punishment. You’ve keep on teaching me when I’ve resisted the lesson. You’ve been patient with me when I’ve been impatient with You. You’ve protected me from the full force of Satan’s schemes when I’ve let my guard down, while still allowing me to feel enough pain to alert me to what was happening. No wonder I love Your promises and stand on them!
So here I am in a world that sees me as the lowest of the low and despises everything I stand for. I’m still standing because I stand for, on, and through You. The world’s opinions are futile and fleeting; Your Word is eternal. So even though my enemies make trouble for me and distress me, I find delight in You. You can lift me a lot higher than they can cast me down.
O, Father, keep helping me to understand and absorb all this so I can really live!
My prayers aren’t half-hearted formulas. I get up while it’s still dark, and after praying and thinking about Your promises through a wakeful night, I call on You to save me. Sometimes I’ve even bargained with You – help me now and I promise I’ll obey You better. But it’s Your love I need so desperately – otherwise, I don’t think I can go on.
The schemers are closing in on me, but their plans are far from Your purposes and protection, Father. And however close they get, I know You’re closer. One thing I learned a long time ago: Your Word can’t be diminished, diluted or destroyed. It endures forever, and I can count on it.
So look on my suffering with Your loving eyes. Defend me against the enemy and redeem me from my sins because I have claimed You as my Savior. I’ve experienced Your incredible compassion in the midst of persecution. I hate faithlessness as much as I love the truth of Your Word.
When powerful people persecute me, they don’t scare me anymore. It’s Your Word that makes me tremble. It alone has the power to change a life, to protect and deliver. So I rejoice in what no one can take from me: the truth that gives me peace, that keeps me from stumbling, that knows me completely and protects me always.
I pray for ever greater understanding, Lord, and I can’t praise You enough for teaching me. My heart is so full that I want to burst into song! Your Word delights me, and I just want to tell everyone I meet how wonderful You are, and do it as long as I live.
I know I haven’t always stayed on Your path; I hate even thinking about it. But I still ask You to seek me out, to speak to – and through – me, because even when my foot slipped, I remembered Your Word and it got me back on track with You.
Thank You, precious Lord, that You persevere in Your grace to me.