Tuesday, September 1, 2015

...and the meditation of my heart

This morning, as I sat with the Lord, Psalm 19:14 came to mind:

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart

    be acceptable in your sight,

    Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

It's a familiar Psalm, and one that I often pray. And I often pray it because, well, let's face it, the words of my mouth get me into a lot of trouble. At best, I'm painfully direct, and at worst I'm disrespectful and self-righteous. Sometimes the things that come out my my mouth offend my very own ears, so I'm sure that they are not acceptable in the sight of the Lord. Nevertheless, redemption is woking its way to my tongue, and little by little, I find myself speaking with greater care. 

This morning, I was drawn to the second phrase of this prayer: "and the meditation of my heart." As I am learning to submit to the Spirit-lead censorship of my speech, I am becoming more aware of the thought patterns from which my words proceed. Are my thoughts, my inner musings, my mental tapes pleasing to God? Are they acceptable in His sight?

Oh how I long for sanctification to seep beyond behavior modification and move deep into the inner-workings of my heart and my mind! Jesus once reprimanded the Pharisees because they had perfected their outward allegiance to the Law without having surrendered the motives of their hearts. He tells them that they are like cups that are clean on the outside but dirty on the inside. 

The Psalmist was insightful with this prayer. It's not simply what comes out of us that matters. God sees my thoughts. And that's an interesting use of words, isnt it? The Paslmist doesn't ask for his words and thoughts to be acceptable in God's hearing, but in God's sight. For God, words are visible. Just as the WORD took on flesh and dwelt among us. 

God isn't simply hearing my thoughts, He's seeing my thoughts. What does He see today?

Does He see a troubled, anxious child, fretting over things despite her Father's promise to meet her every need? Or does He see a content daughter, fearless, and hopeful for the future?

Does He see unkind thoughts towards another that He deeply loves? Or does He see compassion, generosity of spirit, and grace?

Does He see scheming and calculating over a problem that seems insurmountable? Or does He see a confident faith that rests secure in every circumstance?

Father, I want my thoughts to be acceptable to you. When my mind is spinning out of control, when I'm stewing over an issue, when I'm angry and hurt, will you turn my heart to you so that the things I think are pleasant for you to see. And when I'm filled with excitement, resting in Your peace, or overflowing with gratitude, take joy, my King, in what you see. 

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