“Therefore I was provoked with that generation,
and said, ‘They always go astray in their heart;
they have not known my ways.’”
We can come up with all these reasons as to why we “go astray,” why our hearts are drawn away from God, why we find ourselves pursuing sin instead of righteousness. But at the root of it is the question: do we know God? Are we continually seeking to know Him better, to draw closer to Him, to know His ways, His truth, and His character? “And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says ‘I know him’ but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected” (1 John 2:3-5).
If we are in Christ, as we come to know God, we will see that “his commandments are not burdensome” (1 John 5:3), but rather that they are evidence of His perfect love for us. Freedom is found within His commands and in all of His ways. They are meant to protect us so that we can experience abundant life, always knowing the exceeding joy and peace that are found only in God.
The more we see of God’s glory and know of His truth, the more we will recognize the lies that the world tells us. We will see that nothing satisfies as our Lord does. We will see that nothing compares to His glory. We will know the joy that comes in knowing Him. We will find peace as we trust Him in all things, regardless of what we see before us. So our efforts to remain true to our God don’t boil down to our own determination to follow the rules. It comes down to a relationship. As we know Him, He renews our heart. He will complete the work He has begun in us, so let us strive to know Him better and to love Him more, knowing that He is our joy, our satisfaction, and our portion forever.
“This God—his way is perfect;
the word of the LORD proves true;
he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.
For who is God, but the LORD?
And who is a rock, except our God?—
the God who equipped me with strength
and made my way blameless.”
“Make me to know your ways, O LORD;
teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long.”