How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your word. I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. Praise be to you, Lord; teach me your decrees. With my lips I recount all the laws that come from your mouth. I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches. I meditate on your precepts and consider your ways. I delight in your decrees; I will not neglect your word. Psalm 119:9-16 (NIV)
I participated in a class studying Luther’s Catechism at Southwood several years ago. As we were discussing the Ten Commandments, one of the participants commented that we should look at them not as a list of prohibitions, but as a positive guide to conducting our lives. I think that’s a great idea, so here we go:
Mark’s Positive Ten Commandments: (based on Exodus 20:1-17)
- When I put God first in my life, I make much better choices.
- Refusing to put my faith in other “gods” (money, stuff, rock-stars) will keep my focus on what’s really important.
- I only tell Dad jokes. If I have to look around to see who’s listening before saying something, it’s better to keep my mouth shut.
- I love going to church on Sunday. The kids in Sunday School, the fellowship of all you Southwoodians, and hearing the Word are great ways to start my week. Plus, I get donut holes.
- I’m so grateful that I have a loving family. Respecting them and their memory sure seems like the right thing to do.
- Life is sacred. I will respect the dignity and rights of all men and women.
- I made a promise before God that I would be faithful to my wife. ‘Nuf said.
- I don’t need other folk’s stuff – just their trust.
- “On my honor” is an important concept. I want people to have confidence in my words and actions.
- I am very blessed by God in my relationships and material goods. God will provide all I need.
God’s Word can either be a burden to me or an enlightened guide to conduct my life. It’s all in how you look at it. As the hydrogen atom said when he lost his electron, I’m going to stay positive.
Questions for Reflection:
- Is God’s Word a positive or negative for you?
- How can we apply the positive approach to other areas of our lives?
Lord, Thank you for filling my life with blessings. You really do provide everything I need. Guide me to understand your Word and apply it in my daily actions. I want to be your hands in this world. Amen.
About the Author:
Mark Mayer - Bacon eatin', beer drinkin', bike ridin', bunny feedin' (my kids are gone but their pets are still here), nature lovin', geek (my favorite number is pi).