What Does It Mean to Conserve?
“Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me, and know my anxieties;
And see if there is any wicked way in me,
And lead me in the way everlasting.”
(Psalm 139: 23, 24)
Applying the compass of a jet pilot to our personal compass of life we next need to ask what it means to conserve when we think we may have lost our way. The familiar prayer of David in Psalm 139 is one answer to that question. We can assume that David is facing challenging decisions about the way he needs to go. We might also assume that he is aware of what this translation lists as his ‘anxieties.’
He is asking God to take the lid off his mind, heart, thoughts and motives along with his anxieties and show him what should not be there because he wants to walk with God in the everlasting way. By example and precept David is teaching that we should be conservative when our anxiety is letting us know that we have lost our way.
We should not make big decisions when we are down or on an emotional high. We should move ahead steadily when what God shows us under the lid of our heart and mind is in alignment with His will and the way He wants us to go with Him.
My friend, the squadron commander, told me about a rookie pilot who radioed his carrier: “I’m lost somewhere over the South West Pacific Ocean but I’m making excellent time!” When we know we are lost that’s not when we are to be making excellent time. That is the time for us to be conservative and pray this prayer of David.
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