The Straight Path
“Lead me, O Lord, in your righteousness because of my enemies; make your way straight before me.” (Psalm 5:8 ESV)
One of the activities that we did as a family over the holidays and during the lockdown was to go for a hike at Mount Nemo in Burlington. If you’ve ever been there, you’ll know that it’s a beautiful hike. On a clear day, you can see the Toronto skyline including the CN Tower. There are caves and crevasses to explore. As part of the Bruce Trail, it’s worth the visit.
On this particular day though, the hike was a bit more challenging. The path was a sheet of ice. One misstep meant losing your footing and wiping out. That, combined with the dog dragging me along, meant for an interesting walk in the woods.
In Psalm 5, the Psalmist prays to the Lord to lead him along the straight path. It’s a path marked by righteousness. It’s one he wants to be one because of the adversaries he is facing.
As I reflect on this verse, I am reminded that the natural inclinations of my heart apart from Jesus will lead me along a path I don’t want to go. This path is marked by greed, lust, selfishness, and discontentment. It’s the path of foolishness, the path of the world, a dangerous direction that will ultimately lead me to ruin.
But Jesus has come to rescue me from this path of destruction, and to set my feet on level ground and lead me in the straight path. His way is one marked by righteousness, love, selflessness, and a character that is increasingly producing the fruit of repentance.
Proverbs 4:11-12 describes it this way: I have taught you the way of wisdom;I have led you in the paths of uprightness. When you walk, your step will not be hampered, and if you run, you will not stumble.
This is the straight path, the way of wisdom. This is that path I choose to walk today.