“Take to heart all the words of warning I have given you today. Pass them on as a command to your children so they will obey every word of these instructions. 47 These instructions are not empty words—they are your life!” Deuteronomy 32:46-47a NLT.
I am your servant; deal with me in unfailing love,
and teach me your decrees.
125 Give discernment to me, your servant;
then I will understand your laws. Psalm 119:124-125 NLT
24 “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. 25 Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. 26 But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. 27 When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.” Matthew 7:24 NLT
It’s been a muggy, humid, summer week. A soffit reaches over the window flower boxes, preventing my petunias from getting rain. So I go out with a hose and put the nozzle on the mist setting to water the plants. My youngest likes to follow me around–she eagerly watches all the things I do–and stands nearby as I water the flowers. The mist spray blows in the breeze and showers her too with tiny ice-like shards of cold water. She loves it, and laughs and dances under the spray, reaching out for more. Now that I think of it, she’s around me like a little satellite–my company in the garden, a kitchen companion while I’m baking (and she gets to lick the spoon!), my shadow as I reach into the freezer to break off a cold piece of chocolate (and she gets a piece too). She learns a lot following me around–the good, and the not-s0-good.
When Moses speaks to the people and says to pass these words on to their children, what follows is arresting:
These instructions are not empty words—they are your life!
When I read of God’s teaching falling like rain, a gentle shower–it reads like summer and his teaching refreshes and quenches me in the heat, so I can grow. It underscores to me how important it is to keep his word a steady part of my life–to be connected to him daily to learn. I want this for myself (certainly!), and I want it for my kids. I want them to see faith worked out in real life–from taking hold of the log in my eye, to the asking-seeking-knocking of the Lord, and so much more.
Father God, I pray to you:
133 Guide my steps by your word,
so I will not be overcome by evil.
135 Look upon me with love;
teach me your decrees. Psalm 119:133, 135