As this series was coming together, I debated which comes first … meditation or love?
If you’re following along, then you obviously know what I decided. Seems to me like you meditate on the features and characteristics of someone or something before you truly decide to love … I’m open to other viewpoints … feel free to chime in. So …
Take a moment and consider what the greatest love poem you know is …
‘Roses are red, Violets are blue’ versions … while very popular … don’t count!
What did you come up with? Who wrote it?
Maybe it’s something written by some well known or perhaps little known poet …
Or maybe it’s more personal … maybe something written for you by a loved one … or something written by you to a loved one …
Some call the words of God a ‘love letter’ … basically expressing God’s love for mankind. Some debate that oversimplification … I am neither here to debate nor promote that concept.
OK … round 2 … what do you believe is the greatest love poem found in Scripture?
I’m sure a few of you probably listed the very intimate Song of Solomon … and that is indeed a great love poem.
But I’m thinking of something a little different …
What would you think if I told you that someone wrote a love poem in the Bible that is 176 verses in length expressing his love, passion and devotion? Actually it is also the longest chapter in the entire Bible?
I’m talking about Psalms 119 … the object of his (probably David) love, passion and devotion … the words of God.
Note how the author expresses his love for the words of God …
I shall delight in Your commandments, which I love. (verse 47)
And I shall lift up my hands to Your commandments, which I love; and I will meditate on Your statutes. (verse 48)
O how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day. (verse 97)
I hate those who are double-minded, but I love Your law. (verse 113)
You have removed all the wicked of the earth like dross; therefore I love Your testimonies. (verse 119)
Therefore I love Your commandments above gold, yes, above fine gold. (verse 127)
Your word is very pure, therefore Your servant loves it. (verse 140)
Consider how I love Your precepts; revive me, O LORD, according to Your lovingkindness. (verse 159)
I hate and despise falsehood, but I love Your law. (verse 163)
Those who love Your law have great peace, and nothing causes them to stumble. (verse 165)
My soul keeps Your testimonies, and I love them exceedingly. (verse 167)
Those verses give but a glimpse into the love, passion and devotion the author expresses throughout Psalm 119 … I would highly recommend spending time reading through and meditating on this Psalm.
(note: in 2011, in conjunction with a sermon series at church, I actually journaled through Psalm 119 here on the blog over 7 days … if you’re interested here are the links:
- Day 1 Psalm 119:1-24
- Day 2 Psalm 119:25-48
- Day 3 Psalm 119:49-72
- Day 4 Psalm 119:73-96
- Day 5 Psalm 119:97-120
- Day 6 Psalm 119:121-144
- Day 7 Psalm 119:145-176 )
A closing exercise …
Think of someone you love very much … perhaps a spouse, a child, a parent, a grandparent, a friend, etc.
OK. Have you thought of someone?
Then take a moment to think of the love, the passion and the devotion you have for that person.
It’s pretty awesome to consider, isn’t it?
Now take a minute and honestly evaluate the love, passion and devotion you have for God and His words …
How do the two compare? Or is there really any comparison at all?
Could you write a poem motivated by love like David did?
(to be continued with … limitation)