“I have strayed like a lost sheep. Seek Your servant, for I have not forgotten Your commands.” -Psalm 119:176
The psalmist is honest before the Lord. It is deeply personal. There is no hiding from Him who sees and knows all things. When we rightly understand the tender mercies of our Heavenly Father, there is no need to run and hide like our first parents, Adam and Eve, in the Garden. Even when we sin, we have a great Mediator to go before us. Our Great Shepherd will always leave the ninety-nine sheep in the safe pasture to go look for the one that wandered away.
David (likely the psalmist), prays to be sought by Jehovah Yahweh, the Keeper of his soul. He knows God’s commands are not only life giving but life saving, which is why he is determined to remember them and live accordingly with God’s help. Our lives in God’s hands are very much like a sonnet. There are boundaries constructed around the perimeter. We must be diligent to acknowledge the set structure He has given us and submit to His authority. Yet the colorful freedom within the sonnet is our liberty. To live, create, work, play and enjoy His many blessings is our joy and His delight! This is the beauty of man’s will working inside God’s will. To stray outside the cadence would be to our peril. The Lord knows this, loving His sheep too much to let us wander off the path, bleating aimlessly. Our Lord Jesus suffered in the place of each redeemed sinner so that you and I never experience one day apart from Him, the Savior and King.
As this psalm closes, it is good to pray like the psalmist does- “Seek Your servant”. Every Christian has a position before the Lord, as a justified, sanctified believer. Those hidden in Christ are adopted into God’s family, given a heavenly inheritance without end. This is because of Jesus. Faith in Jesus Christ transforms depraved sinners into redeemed ones. The grace of God has reached down and taken hold of every born again image bearer. He will not let His beloved go but intends for His mercy and love to follow you all the days of your life. This is the Christian’s greatest blessing because the goodness of God does not end when we die. It is only the beginning of our blessed eternity with the One who has always loved us first and best of all. God is faithful to pursue His children, and lead them all the way into His Kingdom, our Forever Home.
Grace upon grace,
Growing deeper: Psalm 23; Isaiah 53; Luke 15:1-7; Hebrews 7:24-28; 1 Peter 2:24-25