Teach me your way, Lord, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name. Psalm 86:11
We are called to be one-kingdom people, which means a total reliance on God’s faithfulness.
This is our third day meditating on Psalm 86:11. I have proposed that this psalm may be best read backwards, so we started with an understanding of what it meant to fear God and God alone. From there we looked at the undivided heart and how true fear of God can so overwhelm us that it can bring our heart back its one rightful object of worship. We will conclude by looking at the first two phrases.
The key word for me here is “rely.” You can create your own synonyms; trust, depend, count on, have confidence in, be sure about, etc. All of them point to an uncompromised attitude toward the source of our reliance. What is even more assuring is that it is the faithfulness of God upon which we rely. It should be staggering to us to consider the idea of the Almighty God being faithful for us. Actually, in being faithful to us he is simply being faithful to himself – to his own nature as the steadfast lover of our souls.
So here is a progression. When we are overwhelmed by the fear of God, by his sovereign majesty and his amazing love and grace for us, it will drive out any division in our hearts and focus us back solely and completely on him. As our hearts are healed, we are able to live our lives in absolute confidence of the faithfulness of God. We will rely day by day, moment by moment on the unwavering presence, power and transforming grace of the God who created us, redeemed us and calls us back to himself in Jesus Christ.
All of this is ours as a part of the journey of the faithful steward. This journey requires a level of trust and obedience that is beyond our self. It is fraught with challenges we cannot overcome our own. And it runs counter to the world in which we live, which means this journey always put us in tension and friction with the world around us. This is not the human way, the self-centered way, the world’s way. It is God’s way. And for that reason we need to pray everyday, “Lord, teach us your way.”
Upon what or whom are you depending today? How you answer that question will determine your steps, shape your heart and define your fears. What would it mean for you to rely solely on the faithfulness of God? Will you pray today, “Lord, teach me your way”?
Depending on God for everything can be a rather overwhelming task. So start small. Choose one thing in your life today that you believe you depend on more than God. It may be your savings account, your spouse, your job, your health, your own skills, etc. Ask yourself, “do I rely on this so much that I am fearful of losing it?” If so, let your focus today be on surrendering it back to God, and asking that he would show you His way. Your prayer should be for your reliance on God to replace every other reliance in your life. See if one day of focus will bring you a sense of freedom and peace in that area of your life. If so, make this ‘yielding’ process a part of your daily walk, and one-by-one, yield everything back to him until you begin to experience the joy of an undivided heart.
Loving and Merciful heavenly Father, these days I seem to be relying on so many things other than in your faithfulness. I have to admit it is overwhelming for me to think that you are faithful to me, when in so many ways in my life it seems I am unfaithful to you. But that is your promise and I claim it today. Cultivating my heart, Lord, a deep sense of reliance on you alone. I don’t know how to do this, but you have encouraged me to pray for you to show me your ways. My heart is open, my spirit is waiting, so Lord, teach me your ways that I may rely on your faithfulness. Give me an undivided heart that I may fear your name. In Jesus’ name, Amen.