You already know that the Lord is hilarious. And He speaks everywhere all the time. Well my God story this week is from a bathroom in Hot Springs, North Carolina.
We were making a pit stop on the way to our WGR Leadership Retreat and I saw an open Bible on the bookshelf next to the potty. So since I was just sitting there for a moment (ahem) I looked over to see where it was opened. Oh, surprise, surprise: Psalm 23, where most Bibles are marked in funeral homes and the like. But I sensed the Lord telling me to read Psalm 26 because I love that one. I quickly realized it was in the King James Version, and this familiar verse took on a whole new kick.
“Examine me, O LORD, and prove me; try my reins and my heart.” Psalm 26: 2
When was the last time you prayed that? How much do we give the Lord permission to examine and prove us? I don’t know about you, but the term “try my reins and my heart” really grabbed my attention. Reins are what you use to direct, to lead, to guide, to stop or correct. Reins are how you drive a horse, a carriage, a life.
“Try my reins.” See if I willingly hand them over to You. Are they supple in Your hands from firm, loving use? Are they easy to hold from lots of hours of good following and obedience? Or are they stiff and unused? Have I been running wild without reins or direction?
What about my heart? Do I do the same for my heart? Willingly hand it over? Trust You to hold and lead? Is it soft and following, or hard and balking when You apply tender pressure? And honestly, what is the difference between my reins and my heart?
It is the difference between my will and my affection. It is one thing to say you follow God. It is another to love Him. It is one thing to “obey” out of fear, and quite another to “go with Him” out of pure adoration. Both the reins (or will) and the heart are what God is after. Wholeheartedly His.
Examine me, Lord. Test how I am living life with You. Gauge how I am allowing my life to be led. By You or by my own selfish ways. You are the God of my will. You take the reins. And hold my heart, Lord. Keep it warm, safe and soft in Your mighty right hand. Heal me and make me fully yours. Amen.