What is it that dictates our actions? Is it how we feel on a particular day? Or how much sleep we got last night, how well we feel or not? Or is it even our circumstances and how others are acting towards us in any given moment?
I am certainly guilty of allowing my circumstances and how others are reacting to be the determining factor of what my actions will be. My teenager wakes in a snippy mood. My husband is short tempered. A friend bites me with her words. Suddenly what might have even been a good mood can quickly go south. Lack of sleep and weariness in a particular season also have had the driver’s seat on my actions.
A Francis Chan quote recently came across my media feed that resonated with my soul. “If we were to start with Scripture and allow it to dictate our actions, how would we live?” I ask myself some variation of this question every morning when I read the Word and seek to apply it to my day. How today will I let this Truth dictate how I live, the choices I make and even the attitude and thoughts I will choose? Yet I so quickly forget and revert back to the world around me and the flesh in me making the call on my actions. Lord, help me.
So how can we have holy remembrance? How, today, can we start with Scripture and allow IT to dictate?
- Obviously it has to begin with starting with Scripture. Spend time in the Word. Then take our mind there early and often. Psalm 63 opens with these words, “O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you..” The word translated “earnestly” is a Hebrew word meaning to look early or diligently for. So we are to seek Him with passion, diligence and earnestly but also early. Not necessarily early in the day, though that is my preference. But early in the situation, when things first start rising up in me to cloud my attitude or determine my next steps. Right then, seek Him. Pause. Turn my heart back to orient it with Him. Recall that verse of Truth to mind and let Him have the rule of my heart as Colossians 3:15 says.
- The psalmist goes on in verse 3 to receive the steadfast love of the Lord. When we know in our heart of hearts that we are so very loved by the Lord, we can then act out of that loved state and love others, thus letting Truth dictate our actions.
- Finally, in verse 6 the psalmist remembers the Lord and His character upon his bed. The psalmist recognizes that he must chose what he thinks on. His thinking, and ours, will determine his actions. So he determines to remember the Lord, “[I] meditate on you in the watches of the night; for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy.” God is a Helper and Protector, the psalmist is choosing to remember and meditate on that.
As the Psalm opened, its author, David, was thirsting and fainting but now he is singing for joy. Why the shift? He is allowing the Truth to dictate his actions. Will you and I allow His Word to dictate our actions and live differently today? So then, I ask you the same: if you were to start with Scripture and allow it to dictate your actions, how would you live today?
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