“Your word is a lamp to my feet…” Psalm 119: 105
There are always so many questions about the nature of God’s guidance and how the Word of God should be used in the context of providence. Some imagine that Bible could be used as a guidance by finding random verses to seek encouragement or assuming it to be a word of promise. While some expect God to direct them towards some verses for clear direction, some even use it like a spell book, which could be recited to get the preferred outcome.
But, in this verse by describing the Word of God as a lamp, the Psalmist is talking about the nature of God’s guidance to his people in different way than we normally imagine. Lamp is the source of light to guide the steps. Lamp, with its oil, thread and container, which holds the oil, does not directly represent the light it brings, but represents the entire mechanism which ultimately produces ‘Light.’ The power of the Word and its guidance begins by first working within us. It transforms our inner being so that we develop an inner compass, which would lead our way.
When a person starts meditating “his law day and night” (Ps. 1: 2), the scripture gives him ‘wisdom,’ ‘insight’ and ‘understanding’ (Ps. 119: 98-100). This is the process of transforming the character of the person. The transformation doesn’t happen overnight, but rather in a slow fashion, even as the person meditates on the word daily. It develops a moral compass which reveals what God expects from our lives. Together, wisdom and insight, will surely guide a person in the right path when he most needs instruction.
This is rather an unpopular method among Christians because we usually look for a quick fix to sort our problems. But, the guidance which is promised in the Bible is a ‘long term fix’. Meditating on the Word of God transforms us and makes us wise and able to make decisions. As the Psalmist says, “The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple” (Ps. 119: 130).
The Word of God is challenging us today to meditate on it daily, so that we will be instructed by God and be guided through the Word in all our steps. Let us not seek the Word only in times of crisis and for quick solutions. But, let us strive to listen to the Word’s admonitions, instructions and consolations every day, so that we will be changed and transformed to lead a life of light.
A mature Christian who has the Word of God in his heart will be guided by it from the inside. He is changed by the meditation of the Scripture. He knows exactly what is expected of him in every situation as the Word of God will continually lead and direct his paths. Let the Word of God which is the lamp, guide our feet in all the ways of our lives.