With all my heart I have sought You; do not let me wander from Your commandments.
The psalmist’s highest and greatest passion is a relationship with God. The heart is the essence of who we are. It includes our thoughts, emotions and will. The psalmist is passionately seeking after that which he desires the most – God. It is a relationship, and not a casual one!
Keep in mind that our very best efforts and commitment are not enough to keep us on the right path. And so, the psalmist’s prayer is that God would not let him wander from the commandments. Many might be willing to pray that God would not let them wander, but they would not seek Him with all their heart. Both are essential.
“The more a man’s whole heart is set upon holiness the more does he dread falling into sin; he is not so much fearful of deliberate transgression as of inadvertent wandering: he cannot endure a wandering look, or a rambling thought, which might stray beyond the pale of the precept. We are to be such whole-hearted seekers that we have neither time nor will to be wanderers, and yet with all our whole-heartedness we are to cultivate a jealous fear lest even then we should wander from the path of holiness.”1 Spurgeon, C. H. (n.d.). The treasury of David: Psalms 111-119 (Vol. 5, p. 158). London; Edinburgh; New York: Marshall Brothers.
The truth is that we cannot trust ourselves. We do not have what it takes to stay on the right course, apart from God’s intervention in our lives. But this must never be an excuse for careless disciplines. An appropriate love for God will absolutely result in a determined obedience to God’s commands and confidence in God’s provision.
The apostle Paul says it this way:
So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.
And so dear Christians, we must begin with a love for God. The psalmist was focused on a precious relationship. Our love for God results in hearts that are determined to honor and obey. Our inability to accomplish what we desire in our obedience to the Lord results in humility and dependence. God graciously continues to accomplish His work in our lives and ultimately the One we love the most is glorified.
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