I am a sojourner on the earth;
hide not your commandments from me!Psalm 119:19
I might be a little too dependent on Google Maps. It isn’t that I’m bad with directions. It’s that I hate sitting in traffic, and during the many years of road construction that led to the widening of I-65 between Elizabethtown and Sonora, I lived in Sonora. So, after one particularly memorable experience sitting in traffic with a van full of students for 4 hours during a D-Now weekend, it just became a habit to check the app for traffic before starting any journey. Even if I know how to get where I’m going, sometimes I may need to recalculate my route.
As Psalm 119 continues, the psalmist claims the identity of “a sojourner on the earth.” As we trust the Lord and live according to His word, we are like travelers in this life. We may very well know where we are going, but like the psalmist, we need the guidance of God’s commandments to get there. At times, we wander from the path, and we need the rebuke of God’s word. Other times, we need the encouragement of remembering what God has done or the wisdom to always measure our plans and thoughts against God’s teaching.
My somewhat compulsive use of Google Maps isn’t about restricting myself to a certain route. It’s about finding the best way to get where I’m going and making the most of the time I have instead of wasting it sitting in traffic. That’s similar to how the psalmist approaches the guidance found in God’s word. It’s not restrictive. It’s the best way forward! It’s the way of strength and joy. It’s the way of faithfulness and wisdom. So, in a world where there are a lot of voices offering a lot of direction, let’s choose to say to the Lord what the psalmist says, “I will run in the way of your commandments!”