by Pastor John Fredericksen
Shortly after meeting the woman who became my wife, I knew she was the one for me. It was hard to explain, but she had captured my heart. I thought about her as soon as I woke in the morning, continually during the day, and she was one of the last things I thought about before going to sleep. I consistently pursued a relationship with her allowing all other relationships to become secondary. I not only confirmed that I loved her, I also expressed to her that she satisfied and completed me like no other woman could.
Many of the same principles that make close human relationships work are the same in our personal relationship with the Lord, after salvation. Even though the program has changed from the Law of Moses to the principles of grace, walking with the Lord every day is essentially the same now as it was for David. In Psalm 63, he expresses many of the things that made his daily walk with the Lord such a sweet and joyous experience.
David did not merely have a passive interest in the Lord. He longed for a vibrant relationship with the God of his salvation. He told the Lord, “my flesh longeth for Thee [as] in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is” (v. 1). Since David wrote these words “when he was in the wilderness of Judah”, where water was extremely scarce, his description of being thirsty for the Lord pictured his surroundings. Just as only water can satisfy the need of one in the desert, David realized that only God could satisfy the thirst of his soul.
These were not mere empty words on the part of David. He promised the Lord: “early will I seek Thee” (v. 1). David, like Abraham before him (Gen. 19:27), was in the habit of beginning the early part of his day in communion with the Lord (Psa. 5:3). Just as two people in love long to see each other, David longed “to see Thy power and Thy glory, so as I have seen thee in the sanctuary” (63:2). As David went through the day, he continued to think about the Lord and talk about Him. He wrote, “…my lips shall praise Thee. Thus will I bless [or praise aloud] Thee while I live” (vv. 3b-4a). When a man and woman love each other, they talk to others about the one they love, extoling each other’s virtues. It was the same with David, who happily expressed the virtues of the Almighty.
David’s walk with the Lord was so fulfilling that he couldn’t help but express it. He told the Lord, “My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise Thee with joyful lips…in the shadow of Thy wings will I rejoice” (vv. 5,7b). When two people are in love and maintain a healthy, growing relationship, they too make a conscious decision to be satisfied and joyful in time together. David experienced an even richer and more complete joy by being in the satisfying presence of his God.
David not only began his day in fellowship with the Lord and spoke of Him throughout the day, he also ended his day with the Lord. He wrote, “I remember Thee upon my bed, and meditate on Thee in the night watches” (v. 6). For soldiers and shepherds, the night was divided into three watches: from sunset to 10 p.m., from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m., and from 2 a.m. until dawn. In verse six, David is sharing that, throughout the night, sleep sometimes evaded him because even then he was thinking about the Lord and His greatness.
David also explained: “My soul followeth hard after thee” (v. 8). Just as a young man oftentimes pursues hard after a young woman to win her love, David fervently pursued his relationship with the Lord. Of course, David did not have to win His love. The Lord already loved David. Nonetheless, David was not casual or complacent in the way he nurtured his relationship with the Lord. His walk with the Lord meant too much to him for his efforts to be anything less than diligent and wholehearted. In principle, we should exert the same kind of effort in our relationship with the Lord as we read that David did.
Are you following hard after the Lord? We encourage you to pattern your walk with Christ after the example of David’s wholeheartedness. Make a strong effort to make each day one of fellowship with the Lord from beginning to end.