The Lord dealt with me according to my righteousness; according to the cleanness of my hands he rewarded me. For I have kept the ways of the Lord, and have not wickedly departed from my God. For all his rules were before me, and his statutes I did not put away from me. I was blameless before him, and I kept myself from my guilt. So the Lord has rewarded me according to my righteousness, according to the cleanness of my hands in his sight. (Psalm 18:20-24 ESV)
We can all be bumped off our path in our pursuit of righteousness. On some days we are committed and aligned with God, and other days we get derailed by an inconvenient trouble. In those moments, we can’t allow our emotions influence our next actions. Wickedness has a clever way of tying our shoelaces together so that we trip and fall from grace. When that happens, we must quickly get up and ask God what went wrong.
An immediate act of prayer is the surest way that we can stay connected and open to his counsel. King David role modeled this discipline when he wrote out his psalms. So many times he vented his frustrations to God and also pleaded for mercy and forgiveness. He asked for deliverance from evil and that the plans of his enemies would fail. He sought after God in good and bad times.
The Lord will direct our paths but he expects us to walk. He does his part and we do ours, and that is what enriches our relationship with him. He delights in us when we listen to his guidance, and he rewards our efforts to live a holy and righteous life. There is a temptation to become slack in our faith especially when we face difficulties or see well-known Christian influencers give up on God.
And I suppose that is why Jesus told the parable of the sower casting seeds on different grounds (Matthew 13). The various soils represent conditions of the heart and how this world can cause it to falter or flourish in faith. Only the Lord can soften a hard heart and all he needs is a mustard seed of faith that invites him to begin his work. Our journey towards God and heaven began with that one step. And that is when Jesus started washing our feet; he is leading us to holy ground where we can stand blameless and righteous before God the Father. The pursuit is not easy, but as long as we are following Jesus then we are always doing the right thing.