Teach Me

“Teach me your way, O LORD,
and I will walk in your truth;
give me an undivided heart,
that I may fear your name.”
Psalm 86:11

God and idols exist on two separate planes, and we are in the middle. When we face one, our back is necessarily to the other. It is the goal of the Christian to completely face God, so that he may reflect God’s glory to the world. The Christian’s sinful nature, however, continually pulls him in the other direction: facing and even running toward an idol instead of facing or running toward God. It is an effort, a great effort, to face God. The Christian must move upstream, against the tide. It is easy to go with the flow, to turn and let himself be washed downstream, shuffled along with everyone else.

How wonderful it is, then, to know that God will help us do the hard thing required of us. This psalmist asks God to teach him so that he can “walk in [God’s] truth.” Have you ever asked God to teach you how to behave, how to think, how to feel, how to react, how to push against the tide? I once witnessed a toddler of about 2 or 3 years throwing a tantrum in the mall. The mother, burning with embarrassment, told the child to quit pitching a fit. The child howled,

“But I can’t stop!”

Oh, how much the average Christian is like this small child! The Christian hears, reads, knows what he is required to do, but knows not the process or method. God is the perfect teacher. He requires us to walk in His way and He will instruct us and guide us in that effort! God can give us the undivided heart that we need in order to fully face Him and walk in His way. Jesus said:

“No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love
the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.
You cannot serve both God and money.”
Matthew 6:24

He was preaching on money, but the same can be said of any idol. This is the undivided heart the psalmist was asking for–he was expressing a desire to serve only God.

Who are you serving today? Have you ever asked God to teach you to walk in His way, to give you an undivided heart so that you may serve Him alone? I prayed for God to teach me and felt moved to read psalms and proverbs every day, in order to grow in understanding of God and man. I encourage you to ask God for instruction, and then to follow His guidance so that you can better serve, face, and move toward God.

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