Occasionally, I hear a joking, “Shut up, Dave!” from the back of the classroom when someone thinks the lesson’s point strikes a little too close to home. It’s never my intention to unnecessarily make anyone uncomfortable; Scripture’s truths tend to do that on their own! And believe me; nobody’s conscious gets poked more often than my own.
That’s exactly what happened when I recently read these words from David’s pen:
“Since You are my rock and my fortress, for the sake of Your name lead and guide me” (Psalm 31:3).
I have no problem with the beginning or the ending of the verse – I love to think of God as my rock and fortress – such thoughts bring reassuring comfort in a world that’s shifting and unstable. So, that part’s fine. I also have no problem with asking God to lead and guide me – heaven knows I need His direction. So far, so good!
It’s that 5-word prepositional phrase in the middle that makes me want to say, “Quiet down there; that’s getting too close to home!” Why? Because I know that many – dare I admit, most – of my prayers are not uttered with the same purpose in mind. No, my prayers tend to have “for the sake of Dave” in mind much more than “for the sake of YOUR name.”
David’s prayer was for God to lead him in whatever ways would bring the most honor and glory to the Lord, not himself. David loved and trusted God enough to place the course of his life in God’s hands. It sounds a bit like risky business until I remember that God is so much more capable than I am. So, I’m gonna to consistently give it a try – join me?
Lord, for the sake of Your name, lead us. –Dave
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