Tuesday, December 08, 2009

The Bethany Bullet-December 8, 2009

“Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.”
-Psalm 25:4-5

If ever there was an ancient prayer that ought to be on modern lips it is this prayer, “Show me your ways, O LORD.” If anyone knew about going their own way it was David. More than once David had taken a detour from God’s way.

There was the time he fled from Saul, went to the house of God in the city of Nob. Claiming he was hungry and looking for bread he got his hands on what he sought - the sword of Goliath. I’m sure the priest was thinking, “No way.” When David said, “King Saul has sent me on an errand to fight the Philistines, but I left my weapons at home. You wouldn’t happen to have a sword here by any chance would you?” “Only the one you took from Goliath”, the priest responded. “Take it I won’t be using it.” Though it would have come in handy I suppose, shortly after David apprehended it, Saul’s servants arrived at Nob too. They knew that the priest had turned over the sword to David and accused him of helping start a rebellion. In the end (85) of the men of God at Nob lay dead; all because David had gone his own way.

Then there was the time that he felt guilty by Uriah’s death, shamed by his adultery with Bathsheba, and pained by the death of the child she bore. All because he went his own way and didn’t say, “No way” to temptation.

If ever there was an ancient prayer that ought to be on modern lips it is this one, because we too are fairly adept at going our own way. Like David we know what it is to elevate self, gravitate toward desires, and vacate God’s way for our own way. Our trails are littered with sin, our paths have parted way from God’s, and we too, like David, have robbed people of their dignity or purity, cost people security or harmony, and caused people anxiety or injury. Like David we are left to cry, “Show me your ways, O LORD.” I believe when David prayed this prayer, and hence when we do, he was seeking three things:

  1. To believe he was “right” with God
  2. To know he was connected to God
  3. To be strengthened to live for God

And God answered that prayer in a way more profound than imaginable. God didn’t merely show David the way, in Christ, God became the way. In the birth of Jesus, God isn’t only away in the manger; He is The Way in a manger: “The way, the truth, the life.” To grant us faith to believe we are right with God, the first answer to this pray, we are shown is Christ.

Y—oked as

In Christ, The Way, we see one who Walks Alone Yoked as Sacrifice. Jesus never once departed from God’s ways. From the first steps He took, till His feet were nailed in place He always followed the will of His Father perfectly. He was the holy and innocent Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. In Him we have become right with God. Hence in Him we:

Y—earn for

In Christ we: Welcome And Yearn for Salvation. The salvation given us in the cross, made ours in baptism is granted us through faith and touched & tasted as we come to the table. Advent is the perfect time to pray this prayer, “Show me your ways, O Lord”; as He has, He does, and He shall. Through His salvation we are connected to God. We become whole and are declared holy and our response is to walk in His ways.


Now with David, having by God’s action become right with Him and connected to Him, we ask to be strengthened to live for Him, through the power of the Spirit—Willingly Align Your Steps. At times life can feel like a maze and you’re not sure where to turn. Other times life can feel like it is all tough treading through rugged terrain and at other times it can feel uphill…three steps forward, two steps back. Yet, He has shown us His ways, “To do justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly with our God.” So, with the ancients we can pray the prayer that is always in vogue for the child of God, “Show me your ways, O Lord.”

-Pastor Kevin Kritzer


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