Daily D – Psalm 119:11
I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. (NIV)
I’ve banked your promises in the vault of my heart
so I won’t sin myself bankrupt.(MSG)
David Allen in Getting Things Done (GTD) says our minds are for having ideas and not for holding them. King David says our hearts are for storing words of truth and life and not merely hearing them.
This is one of those Bible verses my Sunday School teachers tried their best to get into my thick head and distracted heart. I heard what they said and pretty well memorized this verse without trying too hard. It took much longer than necessary to figure out the full meaning of the verse.
When I say “much longer than necessary,” I may be referring to decades and not years.
How long will it take you to figure out the importance of well-placed and perfectly-timed truth right where it does the most good?
If you are an aficionado of a sport or school of art, you know the rules, their intricacies, and the exceptions. For example, you know you should probably punt the ball on fourth down and four to go when you are too far away to kick a field goal. This is a generally-accepted rule. You also know teams make a higher percentage of fourth-down attempts than they otherwise consider. Therefore, it is not out of reason to go for it when most others would play it safe and punt.
If you love classical painting, you know scenes and portraits take months or years to complete. A masterpiece became so only after unceasing focused attention over a long period of time. You also know some artists can throw paint on a wall and see what sticks and make millions of dollars. One is an achievement of a lifetime while the other is the flavor of the month.
We know this about football and art, do we likewise know this about truth and life? Read God’s words of truth and life daily. This is a wonderful, life-giving habit. Here is a corollary: Commit God’s words of truth and life to memory so that in every circumstance we know what to do and not to do and when there are exceptions. Two verses to begin with are this one (Psalm 119:11) and Psalm 143:8.
Psalm 119:11 tells us why. Psalm 143:8 shows us how. What other verses tell us who, what, when, and where? When we fill in these posts, what other verses provide connections to build the fences providing protection and freedom within God’s bountiful limits?
Today is a Tuesday that feels like a Monday. We need these two verses from Psalms today to begin moving us in the right direction as our calendars accelerate toward Christmas. We will need God’s truth to guide us. He has graciously and generously provided us with most of what we need in the best-selling book of all time. Let’s read it and make it stick.
Ideas are best captured and stored where we can revisit them.
Truth is best remembered and revisited as often as necessary.
I will hide God’s words of truth and life in my heart that I may live a life honoring to him and beneficial to others.
Our Father, thank you for your words of truth and life. Thank you for preserving them for us. Give us ears to hear what you are saying. Give us hearts like deep wells full of the refreshment and provision we require from the treasury of your wisdom and power. Amen.
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Deuteronomy 8:12-18 When you eat and are full, and build beautiful houses to live in, and your herds and flocks grow large, and your silver and gold multiply, and everything else you have increases, be careful that your heart doesn’t become proud and you forget the Lord your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the place of slavery. He led you through the great and terrible wilderness with its poisonous snakes and scorpions, a thirsty land where there was no water. He brought water out of the flint rock for you. He fed you in the wilderness with manna, which your ancestors had not known, in order to humble and test you, so that in the end he might cause you to prosper. You may say to yourself, ‘My power and my own ability have gained this wealth for me,’ but remember that the Lord your God gives you the power to gain wealth, in order to confirm his covenant he swore to your ancestors, as it is today.
Deuteronomy 6:4-9 “Listen, Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Bind them as a sign on your hand and let them be a symbol on your forehead. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your city gates.“
Deuteronomy 1:2, 3 It is an eleven-day journey from Horeb to Kadesh-barnea by way of Mount Seir. In the fortieth year, in the eleventh month, on the first of the month, Moses told the Israelites everything the Lord had commanded him to say to them.