I will sing of steadfast love and justice;
to you, O Lord, I will make music.
2 I will ponder the way that is blameless.
Oh when will you come to me?
I will walk with integrity of heart
within my house;
3 I will not set before my eyes
anything that is worthless.
I hate the work of those who fall away;
it shall not cling to me.
4 A perverse heart shall be far from me;
I will know nothing of evil. (Ps 101:1-4 ESV)
This is a prayer of deep longing for the Lord. “Oh when will you come to me?” The commitment David makes is to walk in integrity in the meantime. It is a commitment to prepare the heart and home for the coming of the Lord. No part of the heart or the home will be left untouched. There are several things that really strike me about this psalm. The first is the eagerness of the Psalmist for the Lord’s visit. My family lives far from other family members. But whenever a distant family member plans a trip to come and visit, everyone is filled with excitement and begins to prepare in his own way. The house gets a deep cleaning, top to bottom, and the kids plan and ready themselves. It is a much looked forward to event! Such is the giddiness of the psalmist.
His preparation has him looking at his own heart. Is it ready? He expresses a deep determination to purify it. He commits to keeping anything worthless from his eyes and to stay away from any who might fall away. He determines, in every way he can, to “know nothing of evil.” In some ways, his actions seem over the top. Would he not have to leave the world to commit to such things? On the one hand we could say he’s talking about his house, so it is possible. It means a careful management of everyone in his home, which is no small chore. On the other hand I can’t help but think there is some hyperbole involved, but hyperbole that is intended to show the intensity of his longing for a life of integrity. I often think that we are lacking in that kind of longing. We take a much too casual approach to evil in our hearts and homes. This prayer/psalm is such a good reminder.
Is your heart and home prepared for the Lord to visit?
Chronological Reading Plan plus Psalms: 1 Sa 13-14, Ps 101