BIBLE VERSE FOR TODAY…. “I will be careful to live a blameless life…I will lead a life of integrity in my own home. I will refuse to look at anything vile and vulgar. I hate all who deal crookedly; I will have nothing to do with them.” Psalm 101:2,3 NLT
As I once again read Psalm 101, I was struck with the words that communicate the commitment of one who would lead or rule. David was God’s anointed leader over a nation, but he realized that he had to rule his own heart. That lesson for him came with some great heartache.
However, this psalm has some challenges for us whether we are in a position of authority and leadership or whether we are seeking to live an honorable life as one who commands a rule over our own passions, character and focus. The Lord’s promise is that those who follow Him will “rule” with Him in His coming kingdom. So this psalm is instructional on how to be prepared for that calling.
David begins with a statement of resolve and a plea. “I will be careful to live a blameless life – when will you come to help me?” Without the Lord’s help and without dependence upon the Lord our commitments will be short lived and a source of constant struggle and failure. The goal of any leader should be to live “above reproach.”
Paul desire for the Philippians was for them to be, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” (Philippians 2:15 NIV) Paul told Titus that church leaders, “…must be above reproach.” (Titus 1:7 NIV) Paul admonished Timothy, “Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching.” (1 Timothy 4:16 ESV)
David’s next commitment is, “I will lead a life of integrity in my own home.” David realized that real leadership and commitment was both public and private. I have been saddened to hear of accounts of ministers and other leaders who were failures at home; not because of their lack of focus, but due to their words and actions that caused a spouse and children pain and emotional or even physical harm.
David realized that importance of putting a guard over his own heart and mind. He says, “I will refuse to look at anything vile or vulgar.” I don’t know how that was applicable thousands of years ago, but it is constantly in “our face” in our day of television, movies, internet and in our modern culture.
David then realized that “those around you determine the level of your success.” I recently viewed a video where a speaker was addressing teens and told them, “show me your friends and I will show you your future.”
The type of people that David would allow to be in his presence and on “his team” is articulated in several statements in this psalm. David’s key qualification for those who served him is stated in these words, “I will search for faithful people to be my companions. Only those who are above reproach will be allowed to serve me.” (Psalm 101:6 NLT) David doesn’t mention intellect or skill or experience. He focuses on character and conduct that is above reproach.
In our world more than ever we need leaders of churches, communities and families who will make the same commitment as David did. David learn some tough lessons, to understand the importance of these commitments. We are well advised to pay attention and learn.
Prayer for today…. Lord without your help, we are indeed, “helpless.” As we make a commitment to live a blameless life and one above reproach and to surround ourselves with those who are individuals of integrity and character, we ask for your strength and guidance.