Teach Me Your Way

Cathy Hurtado

"Teach me your way, O Lord, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name." Psalm 86:11 NIV

Have you ever struggled with a divided heart? I have. A few years ago I used to get a newspaper. Every morning there would be a battle – would I read my Bible first or the paper first? You see my heart was divided. When I read my Bible, I wanted to get done so I could get to the paper. When I read the paper first, I felt guilty for giving in to my earthly desires and being distracted from my time with God. Conveniently, my subscription was up. I wrote CANCEL on the bill and sent it back. Only the paper kept coming. My husband called and the paper still came. He went in person and it still came. By this time I was sensing it was spiritual battle. I made one last attempt and finally got someone who would cancel my service. I got a call the next day asking if I wanted to subscribe. While the story may be humorous, it also illustrates how the simplest things can divide our hearts. Every day we are confronted with idols which we place before God – our Facebook accounts, our sports, our jobs, our kids, our comfort, our friends, our workout, our texting… But like David, I want to have a heart that puts God first in everything.

So, what can do we do about a divided heart? First, we can admit that our hearts are divided. Like it or not, as long as we live in these bodies, we will struggle with desires for things other than God. Second, we can identify what divides our hearts and start to tackle them one at a time. I started with the newspaper only to realize that my computer’s power button was just as tempting. Third, like David, we need to ask God to teach us His ways so we can walk in His truth and to give us an undivided heart so we can properly fear His name. Lastly, we must take the hard and costly steps of obedience to remove that which divides our heart and keeps us from following after God with a whole heart.

Only by letting Christ live in and through us and relying on Christ’s power will we be able to see true victory. Take comfort – our God pursues us with His unfailing love even when we fail, and as Paul reminds us in Ephesians 1:19-20, the power that God exerted to raise Jesus from the dead is available to us through the Spirit if we know Jesus.

Father, you deserve my worship from an undivided heart. I confess that I let too many things come before you. Give me an undivided heart that I may fear your name. Help me to remove the distractions that keep me half-hearted in my walk with you. Thank you for your unfailing love.

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