READ: Psalms 26-29
THINK: How do you feel about going to the doctor or dentist? For many people, it's an intensely uncomfortable experience. They would just as soon avoid anything that requires a physical exam. Some Christians feel the same about a spiritual exam. Though they realize that God is aware of everything in their lives, they're still uncomfortable subjecting themselves to the scrutiny of the Holy Spirit. But David knew that while it wasn't always comfortable, it was vital to ask the Lord to examine his heart and mind (26:2). That's because what's in the heart and mind eventually comes out in words and actions. If you want to effectively reflect God to others, then be sure to get regular spiritual check-ups.
RESPOND: Why is it important to frequently ask God to examine your heart and mind (26:2)? Why must God's followers be cautious and guarded about hanging out with deceitful and evil people (26:4-5)? Why is it important to praise God openly and tell others about His wonderful works (26:7)? Of all David's accomplishments and successes, how and where did he find his greatest pleasure? (See 26:8 and 27:4 notes.) Why do God's faithful people never need to fear (27:1-3)? How and why does God's presence relieve fears? (See 27:4 note.) What does it mean to "seek his [God's] face" (27:8)? Why and when is it important to "wait for the LORD" (27:14)? What comfort and assurance do you have during times when you feel distant from God or when it seems He doesn't hear your prayers? (See 28:1-9 note.) How does 29:3-9 describe God's voice, and why do you think the psalm uses these descriptions?
PRAY: Ask God to examine your heart and mind to ensure that your thoughts, desires and motives are pure and pleasing to Him. Give thanks that God is always there for you, whether you feel His presence or not.
ACT: Do everything today with pure and proper motives toward God and others. Also, tell someone about something God has done for your recently.
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