It’s “I WILL Wednesday!”
I will walk before the Lord In the land of the living. Psalm 116:9
I grew up in church singing a beautiful song by Richard Smallwood entitled, “I Love the Lord.” From the time I was a little girl, I would lift my voice and sing these lyrics, “I love the Lord/He heard my cry,” and “Long as I live/while troubles rise/I’ll hasten to His throne.” I can admit today, that I had no idea what I was singing about at that time. Nor did I know then that these beautiful lyrics are based in the Psalms.
Psalm 116 begins with the psalmist expressing love for the Lord. He declares, “I love the Lord, because He has heard my voice and my pleas for mercy” (v.1). He had been through many troubles and trials and he voiced his exuberant joy because he knew, through it all, God has heard his prayers!
However, it didn’t end there. The psalmist is overjoyed, because God not only heard His prayers, but He delivered Him from the things that were troubling him. The Psalmist says “For You have delivered my soul from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling” (v. 8). The psalmist had been to the point of death. He knew what it was like to weep bitterly. He knew the grief caused by a heart that is prone to wander. But the psalmist also knew of the power of God that is mighty to save. He knew the love of a Father who is near to the brokenhearted. He knew of a merciful Lord who draws His children back again and again.
The Psalmist asks himself, “What shall I render to the Lord for all his benefits to me?”(v. 12). What can I do for a God that is gracious righteous, merciful, and loving? Many of us ponder that today. What can I ever give back to God to repay Him for the blessings He’s poured out on me?
First, let me say, you CAN’T repay God for His love. You don’t have the capacity to even fathom the kind of love that is everlasting and unfailing. We don’t have the ability to repay a Father who loves so strong and so hard that He gave His very best; He gave His only Son. We won’t be able to meet the measure of love poured out at Calvary when Jesus gave His life. And He is still lavishing His love on us!
We cannot repay God. But we can, like the psalmist, declare I will walk before the LORD in the land of the living. To walk before the Lord, in this passage, means to walk in the light. It is to live to please the Lord in all that you do. When you walk before the Lord, you are conscious of His presence and are accountability to His call. As Colossians 3:23 says, “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” We can walk in the light, truly living our lives for God. Acknowledging with our lives that His presence lives in us (you are the temple of the Holy Spirit). Yes, we will fall and we will misstep, but we get back up and get back on the right path because our aim is to please Him.
As a young girl, I may not have known the great joy that comes from being delivered from testing, trials, and trauma. But, I now know, just like you, the challenges that life can bring. We know the mighty hand of God is one that delivers. We know of His mercy, love, and power. And in response we can declare like the psalmist “I WILL walk before the LORD in the land of the living.”