Recently I came across a date written in the margin of my Bible, next to part of a Psalm.
It was my nineteenth birthday.
I can’t really remember much about the day itself, but I remember the season of life I was in. I had spent the year after high school working at a radio station and was looking forward to attending Bible college that fall. I remember the spiritual passion and how I was so excited to see what life with Christ would bring. There were a series of question marks that needed exclamation points: would I meet someone and get married? Could I launch a full-time music ministry, as I was so hoping to? Dare I believe there would be a recording contract or at the very least, an album and a tour in my future?
The year that followed was filled with disappointment and heartbreak.
When things did not go the way I planned, I learned a few hard lessons about life and love and the way the world works. And I discovered, eventually, that I had a choice. I could choose the exhausting path of bitterness and self-protection, or I could choose to trust the One who knew me better than I know myself, and rest in His unfailing love.
Fast forward fifteen years. In that time, I’ve moved provinces, gotten married and had four kids, and it amazes me that when I read this passage again, my heart still cries YES and AMEN!
Teach me, Lord, the way of your decrees,
that I may follow it to the end.
Give me understanding, so that I may keep your law
and obey it with all my heart.
Direct me in the path of your commands,
for there I find delight.
Turn my heart toward your statutes
and not toward selfish gain.
Turn my eyes away from worthless things;
preserve my life according to your word.
Fulfill your promise to your servant,
so that you may be feared.
Take away the disgrace I dread,
for your laws are good.
How I long for your precepts!
In your righteousness preserve my life.
Psalm 119:33-40 (NIV)