Psalm 119 is like an all-you-can-eat buffet. Here is the second morsel of truth we should all be chewing on.
2) God’s word is the path to happiness and blessing – Walking in God’s way brings life –
- In verse 35 he says "Make me walk along the path of your commands for that is where my happiness is found"
Our culture cannot be blamed for seeing God as a kill-joy because that is often how Christians present him. Too many of us live like God is the God of "Thou Shalt Not" But this is really only part of who God is. "Thou Shalt Not" is not how the story begins. God makes the first man and the first woman in Genesis 1:26-28 and the first thing he does to them is BLESS them.
God is a God of blessing. He is life and he gives life. He knows how human beings were designed to work. He gives us his word as a way to help us stay alive. We should see that his word is a gift to us like two rails are a gift to a locomotive. Walking in his ways is the way to happiness. But the lie our culture has been stumbling over is the lie that God is a kill-joy and happiness is found elsewhere in, food, drink, success, popularity, vacations, in... you name it.
But God's word actually provides the rails that keep us from crashing and burning. Human beings need a track to run on.
photo by Roxanne Alley on Flickr
All of the political regimes over the history of the world have been offering tracks for people to adopt. Yet, God's word is clear. Any track we lay that is not securely founded on God's word will result in destruction. The end destination God offers you is eternal joy in the presence of your creator and redeemer. It is not by accident that Jesus says "I am the way (the track), the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father but by me." (John 14:6)
But like our first parents though we often believe just the opposite to be true. We believe God's ways will be the death of us. We think they will leave us depressed or bored or both. Nothing could be further from the truth. God's commands offers us life. Psalm 119 offers us this important reminder.
When we follow God's tracks with our money we are generous with others and we care for the poor. This protects us from being smug and prideful. It also gives us something more to live for than our own comfort and pleasure.
When we follow God's tracks in our sex lives it protects us from broken hearts, broken trust and more.
When we follow God's tracks with our neighbors we love them and spend time getting to know them. This creates a neighborhood of friendliness and fun instead of a scary place where we are always watching our back. When we love our neighbor as ourselves it protects us from the loneliness of isolation.
When Moses brought God's word to the people of Israel he told them "Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live!" (Deuteronomy 30:19)