Tag Archives: God’s way

Follow the Way, with Psalm 119

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Exod 13-21 lead the way, fire

Follow the Way, with Psalm 119

As we continue with Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s reflections on Psalm 119, I needed to stop short and consider the next verse at some length. Or rather, consider Bonhoeffer’s thoughts on verse 3.

Who never do any wrong,

but always walk in His ways.

As Bonhoeffer introduced his comments, “God will not allow us to go on any way on which He Himself has not preceded us. The way upon which He calls us to go is the way He has made and that He protects. So it is really His way.” [1]

I love many of Bonhoeffer’s writings. However, I suspect there might be a bit of black-and-white thinking here, both in the psalmist’s thought patterns as well as Bonhoeffer’s. If a person follows after God, they will “never do any wrong.” If a person follows after God, they will “always walk in His ways.” Period. No question about it.

So sorry, but I cannot agree. I am vividly aware of my sinful self, and my fallen nature. Sure, I strive to walk with God day by day. Certainly, I freely admit I am not sinless. However, I strive to sin less and less each day. Each month. And, each year. This verse makes it sound like a follower of God is immediately transformed into sinless perfection. So sorry, but I simply do not think so. (With humble apologies to certain of my seminary classmates, who lean towards Wesley’s doctrine of perfectionism.)

Yet, I fully agree with what Bonhoeffer said about the Lord going before us, as the Lord went before the nation of Israel, leading them in the wilderness, with a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. (Exod. 13:21-22)

God does know the whole way. There are no surprises to God. “Whoever sets his foot on this way finds that his life has become a journey on the road. It leads through green pastures and through the dark valley, but the Lord will always lead on the right pathway (Ps. 23) and He will not let your foot be moved (Ps. 121:3).” [2]

I pray that God will be with me throughout my journey, whether I am a prodigal, turning from the way God intends for me, or whether I walk hand in hand with my Savior, even through the dark valleys of life. Dear Lord, in Your mercy, hear all of our prayers.



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Why not visit my companion blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.  #PursuePEACE. My Facebook page, Pursuing Peace – Thanks! And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er


[1] Meditating on the Word, Dietrich Bonhöffer, edited by David McI. Gracie. (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Cowley Publications, 2000. 104.

[2] Ibid, 104-05.

Doing Things God’s Way—the Honest Way

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Saturday, November 7, 2015

honesty got me sober

Doing Things God’s Way—the Honest Way

Sometimes it’s a challenge to be honest. I mean, completely honest. (Some might say rigorously honest.)

Sometimes it’s easier to bend the truth, or only tell a half truth. Someone might get mad, or be embarrassed. Sometimes I might want someone off of my back or out of my hair.

But, what if I end up telling half of my friends one story, and the other half something else? Then, not only do I need to remember who I told what, but also keeping the story straight. I might get into big trouble, trying to remember all the half-truths and who I told what, when.

On top of that, the recovery program lets me know that honesty is not only the best policy, but it is the easiest policy, too. Telling the truth, in the long run, is the healthiest choice for me. Not only in terms of how I live my life, but in terms of sobriety, too. In terms of faith, and in terms of relationships, as well.

Since this month I am focusing on Step Eleven in the recovery program, “Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understand God,” I need to consider staying honest as improving my relationship with my Higher Power. That’s the vertical part of the relationship piece. If I concentrate on improving my relationship with others, that can only help me, too. (The horizontal piece.)

Let’s pray. Gracious God, Higher Power, I thank You for the versatility and usefulness of this Step. Thanks for the countless thousands and thousands of people who have worked the steps before me. Thank you for this meditation today, bringing my mind, heart and soul to the task at hand: doing things God’s way—the honest way.


Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er