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Reading:                                         Psalm 119

ט Teth

 (Verses 65-72)

Do good to your servant
according to your word, L
ORD.
Teach me knowledge and good judgment,
for I trust your commands.
Before I was afflicted I went astray,
but now I obey your word.
You are good, and what you do is good;
teach me your decrees.
Though the arrogant have smeared me with lies,
I keep your precepts with all my heart.
Their hearts are callous and unfeeling,
but I delight in your law.
It was good for me to be afflicted
so that I might learn your decrees.
The law from your mouth is more precious to me
than thousands of pieces of silver and gold
(NIV).

Reflection

This past Christmas my wife gave me a 99.99% pure silver coin. The coin commemorates the 150th anniversary of Canada’s confederation. It’s a beautiful coin that honors in precious metal the history of a beautiful country. Unlike many other gifts, this piece of pure silver will appreciate in value with the passage of time.

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Canada’s Parliament Buildings as seen from the National Gallery — photo by David Kitz

In today’s reading from Psalm 119, we are challenged to consider what we truly value. The psalmist writes, “The law from your mouth is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold.”

What do you value in this life? What is precious to you? We need to continually assess what is dear to us because from that assessment we determine the course of our actions and the outcome of our life. An accurate assessment depends on sound judgment, so earlier in this psalm the author makes this request: Teach me knowledge and good judgment, for I trust your commands.

We live in a world that chases after wealth and material goods. Apparently, that’s where the value is. But the psalmist reaches a far different conclusion. He values God and His word above all else.

Such thinking is heresy according to the wizards of Wall Street. But silver and gold can’t keep you warm at night. It might buy you sex, but it can’t buy you love. You see real value isn’t found in the gift; it’s found in the giver. My wife is much more valuable to me than thousands of gold coins. As for God, He’s the ultimate Giver—the Giver of all things. We receive true value when we receive Him.

Response: LORD God, I want right values. That starts with loving you with all my heart, soul and strength. Let my actions reflect your values. You value people. That’s why your Son bled and died. Amen.

Your Turn: What do you value in life? Do your actions reflect your values?