Psalm 26: 2-3 “Test me, O Lord, and try me, examine my heart and my mind; for your love is ever before me, and I walk continually in your truth.” (NIV)
If we are to remain healthy in this life, we must undergo medical examinations from time to time. As I have grown old and gray, I have a physician examine me every three months to ensure any changes to my health are picked up for further observation. As logical as this process appears, there are many who refuse to be examined because they don’t want to know if they have anything wrong. We all know loved ones or acquaintances that literally endanger their lives by refusing to be examined. Just as a medical examination is important to our physical health, a spiritual examination is important to our spiritual health.
Psalm 26 is clearly about David who is under great pressure that is grinding away in his life while he endures false accusations, and hurtful charges about his conduct, speech, and relationships. When we find ourselves at this moment and in this place, what should we do? David speaks out in our devotional text for God to test him and examine his heart and mind. Now that is just what the doctor ordered; an examination and test of our mind, heart, and will! The Apostle Paul challenges us to examine ourselves, test ourselves to see if we are in the faith (2 Corinthians 13:5). In fact, Paul commands us to examine ourselves before the Lord’s Supper to ensure we do not profane what is sacred to our Lord (1 Corinthians 11:28).
The point is that a spiritual examination by our God, along with our own self-examination, should be a habitual practice of the Christian, so that any wrong way or errant thinking is identified and removed before it takes root and does us real harm. What are we looking for when we make this spiritual examination? What should we find to know that we are walking in God’s path of righteousness? Our devotional text points us to an acceptable outcome of a spiritual examination:
- First, we must walk, operate, communicate, and relate in love. The love of God must be ever before us. Look at 1 Corinthians 13 to see what God’s expectations for love embody. If we fall short on this point (we all do) then pray for forgiveness and God’s help to give you a heart and spirit of love.
- Second, we must walk continually in the truth. Are we obedient to the Word of God and his instructions to us? Walk continually means there is a consistency and a pattern of obedience in our lives. Obedience is a life style that starts with acknowledging that the things and words of God are to be sacred in our lives.
When we come to our spiritual examination, do we have the courage to accept the truth of what it reveals, and repent of any flawed way so that we might truly learn, heal, and redirect our lives to a Godlier walk? It takes courage to deal with whatever raw truth comes from this examination, but I can say with authority that God will restore your wellness and multiply your strength if you will open yourselves up and state, “Test me, O Lord, and try me; examine my heart and my mind.”
TODAY, FATHER, TEST ME AND EXAMINE MY HEART AND MY MIND, AND REMOVE ANY OBJECTIONABLE WAY FROM MY LIFE. AMEN!
Article by Mike White @ Summit Church of Christ