All the Day Long
Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long.(Psalm 25:5)
Waiting for guidance, waiting for instruction “all the day” is a very blessed part of waiting upon God.
We want in our times of prayer to give clear expression to our sense of need, and our faith in His help. We want definitely to become conscious of our ignorance to what God’s want may be, and the need of the divine light shining within us, if our way is to be as of the sun, shining more and more unto the perfect day. And we want to wait quietly before God in prayer, until the deep, restful assurance fills us: It will be given-“the meek will He guide in the way.”
“On Thee do I wait all the day.” The special surrender to the divine guidance in our seasons of prayer must cultivate, and be followed up by, the habitual looking upward “all the day.” As simple as it is, to one who has eyes, to walk all the day in the light of the sun, so simple and delightful can it become to a soul practiced in waiting on God, to walk all the day in the enjoyment of God’s light and leading. What is needed to help us to such a life is just one thing; the real knowledge and faith of God as the one only source of wisdom and goodness, as ever ready, and longing much to be to us all that we can possibly require- yes! this is the one thing we need. If we but saw our God in His love, if we but believed that He wants to be gracious, that He waits to be our life and to work all in us- how this waiting on God would become our highest joy, the natural and spontaneous response of our hearts to His great love and glory.
It has often been jokingly said that men would rather be lost and drive around in circles rather than stopping and asking directions. I suppose there’s truth to that but in reality it’s a disease that affects the whole of humanity. Far too often we proceed in life without direction or instruction. It’s not that we don’t know the value of instruction and direction. It’s usually because we believe we have sufficient knowledge and therefore need not to ask. Many times pride and ego are the underlying reasons for not asking. We may feel that somehow that asking makes us seem weaker or less of a person. From the years of teens it seems we develop a perception that we either know all we need to know or we are smart enough to figure it out on our own. This seems to follow many into adulthood and influences many of the decisions made by individuals, corporations, and nations. When we read history, it appears we make the same mistakes over and over and over again. I believe this can be attributed to this idea of not needing instruction and direction.
Both history and the Bible record the repeated failures of humans. As we read through the pages of the Bible we find that people made the same mistakes in every generation. The book of Judges records that the people of Israel, after settling in the Promised Land would begin to worship false gods and find themselves overcome and subjects to neighboring nations. There would be a leader raised up who would draw them back to God and God in His mercy would deliver them. The next generation would again begin to worship false a gods and the process would happen all over again. This happened throughout their history until finally they were removed from their land and taken as slaves to Babylon. Again God’s grace stepped in and they were able to go back home under the control of the Persians. By the time of Christ, they had once again moved away from God and rejected the Messiah and in 70AD were destroyed.
Not too many years ago, after WWI the League of Nations was formed to prevent another world war. Unfortunately 20 short years later found the world embroiled in another world war which was to be the war that ended all wars. The United Nations was formed and yet we experienced the Cold War, the Korean War, the Vietnam War and on and on.
So here we are driving around in circles. While history records the bigger picture, the real question comes to us as individuals. Do we find ourselves on the merry-go-round of life, repeating the same behaviors, especially the destructive ones?
Here’s what I’ve learned in my short 64 years. I’m not the first nor the only one to be facing this question. There are those more knowledgeable and experienced than I and it’s far less costly to learn from them. Maps are designed and made available for a reason, even GPS is wrong sometimes. My parents transformed from dumb to smart when I became a parent. It’s less frustrating to read the instructions before starting. God knows everything and about everything including everything the man has invented. God has designed patterns for the best living and they have been proven throughout time. It’s best to have directions before starting the journey, it might get you to your destination easier. If you include God in your life and plans, you get His help and resources. It’s worth the time and effort to wait on God’s instruction and direction. Our world would function better if it functioned as God designed it to. Our lives would be better if we lived them under God’s guidance.
Dr. John Thompson