The Tough Path
Lord, You have carried all my pain and sorrow. You have walked the way of suffering so I may gain peace. Thank You.
Read Psalm 119:49-72
ז Zayin Remember your word to your servant, for you have given me hope.  My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life.  The arrogant mock me unmercifully, but I do not turn from your law.  I remember, LORD, your ancient laws, and I find comfort in them.  Indignation grips me because of the wicked, who have forsaken your law.  Your decrees are the theme of my song wherever I lodge.  In the night, LORD, I remember your name, that I may keep your law.  This has been my practice: I obey your precepts. ח Heth You are my portion, LORD; I have promised to obey your words.  I have sought your face with all my heart; be gracious to me according to your promise.  I have considered my ways and have turned my steps to your statutes.  I will hasten and not delay to obey your commands.  Though the wicked bind me with ropes, I will not forget your law.  At midnight I rise to give you thanks for your righteous laws.  I am a friend to all who fear you, to all who follow your precepts.  The earth is filled with your love, LORD; teach me your decrees. ט Teth Do good to your servant according to your word, LORD.  Teach me knowledge and good judgment, for I trust your commands.  Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey your word.  You are good, and what you do is good; teach me your decrees.  Though the arrogant have smeared me with lies, I keep your precepts with all my heart.  Their hearts are callous and unfeeling, but I delight in your law.  It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees.  The law from your mouth is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold. Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectAre you willing to suffer for Jesus?
I am writing this during Holy Week, so it is not surprising that the suffering of the psalmist strikes me in a fresh way. The theme of the believer living in an alien and hostile world is common in this psalm. Notice the response to the arrogant (51,69,70) with their verbal attacks and physical assaults (61) and the deep sense of personal suffering (50,71). Yet the writer continues to trust in the Lord and his “ancient” laws on a 24/7 basis (55,62). Jesus himself experienced all this throughout his life, but much more acutely in his final days. He, of course, had not gone astray (67) and did not deserve the punishment inflicted on him, yet he walked the path of obedience and sought his Father’s face with all his heart.Such alienation may be familiar to you or to someone you know. Those who follow Christ have opted for the narrow road, the tough path of obedience. What comfort or reassurance does the psalmist offer you?
Reflect on Christ’s humiliation and how you experience derision (in a much lesser way) because of your trust in him.
My beloved King, thank You that You speak. Your voice is life to me. I am listening.