In Psalm 25:4-5 David prays, “Make me to know Your ways, O LORD; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me …”. Many Christians might identify with these words. Upon reading them they might say, “Amen! I want God to lead ME like that!” But do you really? Are you willing to do what is necessary for God to lead you? What does that involve? Psalm 25 shows us:
— First, David says at the end of :5 “For You I wait all the day.” If we want to know God’s way, then we must be willing to wait on Him. Now, “waiting” on Him doesn’t mean “just sitting around and waiting.” It means waiting in His presence in His word & prayer. It means investing the time it takes to know His way. This is no “5-minute quiet time” or hurried daily devotion. It means spending all the time necessary to hear from God. Are you willing to invest that time? There is no substitute for it. That is what it takes to really know His way.
— Second, to really know His way we must be willing to turn from sin. It is striking how many times this Psalm, in which David is asking for God’s guidance, refers to his need of purity before God. He asks God in :7, “Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions.” In :11 he asks, “Pardon my iniquity, for it is great.” In verses 12 and 14 he mentions “the fear of the LORD”, which is an awareness of His presence and our accountability to Him which causes us to purify our lives from sin. All of which instructs us that if we really want God to lead us, we cannot just continue thoughtlessly in sin. We must purify ourselves from all known sin, if we really want His leadership. Do you really want God to lead you? Are you willing to give up that sin in order to have it? You can’t have both.
— Then, in :9 we find another key to God’s leadership: humility. “He leads the humble in justice, and He teaches the humble His way.” If we want God to lead us, we must come to Him in humility, admitting our sin (as we just saw) and humbly submitting ourselves to His leadership. We can’t come in pride, thinking that we already know what to do; or that we have all the answers. We will be ready to do whatever it is He shows us. The proud person is not willing to submit themselves to him like that. And they will also never have God’s direction. For “He teaches the humble His way.”
So … in light of these things, how much do you really want God to lead you? It is one thing to pray, “Make me to know Your ways, O LORD?” Many say that. But as Psalm 25 shows us, it is another thing entirely to do what it takes to really know it!