The Way and The Walk

Spurgeon sees it as the sort of song a “man after God’s own heart would compose when he was about to become king in Israel.” A psalm written in that time between his anointing for the throne and his ascension to the throne. So, in a sense, it’s a song sung in the green room before going on stage. A self-administered, melodic pep talk in the locker room before entering the big game. A prayer prayed in the back room before taking the pulpit.

The newly anointed king is ready. He’s lived under the failings of the old king. Seen what not to do. Experienced the bad decisions that come from a self-serving approach to governing. Witnessed the consequences of not obeying the voice of the Lord. And so, as much as lies in himself, David aspires to be different.

Ten times in these eight short verses the man who would be king declares, “I will.” Purposing to pursue that which is righteous and just, and to put down that which is unrighteous and wicked. And what catches my eye this morning, in particular, are two I will’s at the center of his holy determination.

I will ponder the way that is blameless. Oh when will You come to me? I will walk with integrity of heart within my house.

(Psalm 101:2 ESV)

While David waited for the kingdom, while we waited for God to come to him, he would give attention to the way and he would act accordingly from the heart. This morning I’m chewing on the connection between the way and the walk.

David, according to the ESV, pondered the way which, before God, would be blameless. Other translations say he paid attention to it (CSB); gave heed to it (NASB); behaved wisely concerning it (NKJV); lived carefully according to it (NIV).

While in the wings, sort of speak, David did his homework. Becoming increasingly familiar with the ways of His God, the One who had set him apart for the throne. Regularly feeding on the word of God. Intentionally seeking counsel as to the wisdom of God. Getting his head in the game. His focus on the prize. Pondering the way that is blameless.

And where there is laser focus on the way, there’s the opportunity for it to translate into a wholeheartedness when it comes to the walk.

David longed to walk with integrity of heart. And that would start “within his house.” His family witnessing it long before his subjects would. How he would behave in public would first be modeled in the confines of his home. Because he had focused on the way, his heart would be aligned to the way. And because his heart was aligned to the way, his walk, whether private or public, would reflect the way.

And so, because I can’t help but put almost everything I read through a quarantined filter, I wonder if we shouldn’t view this time in our homes as sort of being in our own locker rooms before we’re called back again into our own games. Our own green rooms before taking again the stage. A time and place where many distractions have been removed and we’ve got the time to ponder the way that is blameless. And confess how insufficient we are in our own strength concerning that way. But reminded afresh that Jesus died for our insufficiency and rose again so that we might know His power.

And having pondered the way, it’s going to impact the walk. A heart saturated with the way, is a heart that is going to direct the walk. Whether that walk is just me in the presence of my God, or me before my family, or me when I’m again rubbing shoulders with those who, for now, are socially distanced.

Integrity of heart. Isn’t that what we want fueling our motivations, setting our priorities, determining our actions? I”m thinking . . .

So, is it as simple as focusing on the way in order to impact our walk? Maybe. Maybe not. But you gotta think it’s a good start while we’re waiting to once again get in the game.

By His grace. For His glory.

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