When we are born, we know nothing, have no plan to follow, and must be taught how to live. Before us are opportunities and options, choices and consequences that await us. Unfortunately, we do not have any “second chances” in life to live our lives over again. No matter how deep our desire may be or how desperate we are, we cannot relive one second nor retrace one step. Each step is final, and every second gone forever.
David, however, says that the Good Shepherd will “lead us in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.” Note carefully that He does not simply want us to understand what righteousness is, but that He leads those who are His own “in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake” – so we can avoid the many tragedies that we face in life.
This is very important. The “righteousness” that David is speaking of here is not an end in itself. If it were, it would lead us to a state of “self-righteousness” – not godly righteousness. God does not want us to stray or walk in paths that are unrighteous because they will lead us to defeat and destruction, sin and shame. He wants to lead us in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Nothing is more important for us. Why?
Because the Shepherd’s name – His reputation – is at stake. Like it or not, His name will be respected or rejected, honored or harmed, by the way we live. Our lives say it all.
Alexander the Great once said to one of his soldiers, “Your name is Alexander and my name is Alexander. But you are bringing disgrace to my name. Change your name or change the way you live.” So, it’s “righteousness for His names sake”
Prayer: Enable, us Father, to walk righteously in Your power for Your Name’s sake, to honor You. May we take Your reputation seriously! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Scripture For Today: He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake. Psalm 23:3