“How can a young person stay pure?
By obeying your word.
I have hidden your word in my heart,
that I might not sin against you.
Open my eyes to see
the wonderful truths in your instructions.”
Psalms 119:9, 11, 18 NLT
Now here’s a young person desiring to live a life without fault in God’s eyes. He wasn’t just saying that – you can tell he was really serious in his question. And the next line shows that he knows the answer – by obeying God’s Word. So that’s it – problem solved and life sorted. But hang on a minute! God’s Word starts with Genesis and ends with Revelation – how can I ever get my mind around all that, what it means, and how to apply it in my thoughts and actions, so that my life is sinless and pure. An impossible ask, I think you will agree. It’s a relief to know that God doesn’t expect that of us. Through Jesus, He shows us a better way.
But verse 11 is key. We need to read the Bible regularly. Because then the life-words will spring out of the pages straight into our hearts, and there they will reside waiting for the Holy Spirit to bring them to our remembrance when we need them. But transitioning from an impure to pure life-state is not an instant process. If only it was. It takes a lifetime and more besides. God’s grace is amazing though. Like a parent with a toddler, God takes our hands and leads us step by step. Hear the gentle whispers, “Not that way” or “This way is better”. Remember the words read from the Scriptures, bringing us wisdom, keeping us on the right paths. Yes, we will from time to time stumble over the boulders and hurdles in our way, leaving us sprawling in the mud of our sins. But our loving Heavenly Father won’t leave us there. He picks us up, dusts us off, wipes away the tears of hurt and frustration, and that gentle whisper again – “My way is better”. If we listen to Him and let Him. So we pray with the Psalmist, “Open our eyes to see”. Amen.