Life is a long journey; to begin well is no guarantee that we shall not lose our way later on. So David prays for God’s help:
“Show me Your ways, LORD,
teach me Your paths.” (verse 4)
He already knows God as his Saviour; but that was just the beginning of their relationship. For us also, salvation is just the beginning of a life of trust and obedience – a life that brings glory to God. Like David, we need to cultivate an attitude of dependence upon God in every aspect of our lives, every moment of every day.
God’s truth (verse 5) is not knowledge for knowledge’s sake; it is to be worked out in the personal circumstances of our daily lives. So His truth and His way are one and the same; to walk in His truth is – quite simply – to follow Him. “I am the way and the truth and the life,” says Jesus (John 14:5,6). We shall not always succeed. We know that mistakes made early in life often have long-lasting repercussions, and can be the cause of long-term regret. But God’s love and mercy are much bigger than our sins and failures, and He can cancel out the errors of the past.
We do not need any qualifications to enrol in God’s school. The only preconditions are a humble heart that acknowledges its need, and a desire to obey. And He is a most loving and patient Teacher (verse 8), encouraging and enabling his people to become more and more like Him. No-one who makes the effort to learn will fail to graduate! “I am confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 1:6)