You are my portion, O Lord; I have promised to obey your words. I have sought your face with all my heart; be gracious to me according to your promise. Psalm 119:57-58
Psalm 119 is a captivating Psalm centered on the goodness of God’s Law, His Holy Word. This particular Psalm has 22 stanzas and is actually longer than 30 books of the Bible. Its words depict the dedication to, delight in, and dependence on God’s decrees. In today’s passage, the Psalmist declares the Lord is his portion as such he promises seek Him with all his heart and obey His words. As the Psalmist spends his life doing these two spiritual acts, he asks God to be gracious to him according to God’s promise.
As I read today’s Psalm passage, I must admit my spirit squirmed sheepishly at the mere mention of obedience coupled with a heartfelt seeking of the Lord. I had to ask myself, “Have I been doing this in my life?” The honest answer is “not always!” Sure there were many times when I was obedient to God’s Word but there were more times when I wasn’t! Since my diagnosis of Early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, it seems to be much easier to be obedient since I‘m not exposed to the “real world” like I was while working as an engineer for the Department of the Army. But I still struggle with obedience in the full sense of the word. God’s law is all encompassing and my obedience certainly falls far short of being all encompassing.
Next is the matter of seeking the Lord with all your heart. Here again, I fall short! Sure there are times when my heart seeks the Lord with the veracity of a hungry lion. I just can’t seem to get enough of His Word and His time. But then there are times when I just go through the motions. I read a few passages, say a short prayer, and go about my day. At these times, I am lukewarm and God must be displeased with my actions just like John said in Revelations 3:16, “So, because you are lukewarm – neither hot nor cold – I am about to spit you out of my mouth.”
Oh to be like the Psalmist, to seek the Lord with all your heart and be obedient to His words. That is the mark of someone worthy of God’s attention. Make every effort to be that person today. Seek Him with all your heart, spend time in His Word devouring the Scriptures, and strive to be obedient to the words you’ve read. Then, like the Psalmist, you can claim, “The Lord is my portion!”