The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple;  the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes;  the fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; the rules of the LORD are true, and righteous altogether.  More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb.  Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward.  Who can discern his errors? Declare me innocent from hidden faults.  Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me! Then I shall be blameless, and innocent of great transgression.  Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer. (Psalm 19 ESV)
The King of Swing
Pete Sampras, the “King of Swing” was one of the greatest tennis players of all time. He was number one in the world for six consecutive years, won 14 grand slam events, 64 career singles titles, the most notable in 2002 when he beat Andre Agassi in the U.S. Open. The amazing thing about Sampras, according to my tennis coach in high school was what he called “lawn chair tennis.” This guy looked as if he was putting little or no effort into his strokes. Guys like Agassi would, on every stroke, swing with all their might. My tennis coach told me that the best learning strategy for me would be to play like Pete. He went through the process of teaching me “lawn chair” tennis, and when my temper didn’t get the best of me, I was fairly successful.
What was the point of imitating Sampras for me? While learning from a certain set of skills was helpful, it was more than simply wishing to be like Sampras. I wanted to win the game! What happens when you imitate someone you admire and you match their game stroke for stroke, but you miss the joy of winning the match? Then who cares! You have imitated someone for no reason other than to say that you did so.
In the passage before us this week, we come to a hero of a completely different kind. David was the warrior-king who was called in 1 Samuel, a man after God’s heart. We look to David here in Psalm 19 for a reason. The reason is bigger than just imitating David, and you have to see that. Not only is David a flawed model to follow, but his life is pointing to someone greater than himself, and that is the reason we look to him, because he points us away from himself to God. I don’t know about you, but I am longing for something greater than cultural Christianity, or typical church life. We sit together this week, longing for the very heart of God. We long to know what it’s like to be people after God’s own heart, or a people loyal to God and like-minded with God. We look to David to see how he lived so that God would be able say that about him and we are shocked at the possibility that it could be said about us as well! This is an exciting reality! Are you ready?
Hope in Psalm 19
The key to knowing God and becoming people after his own heart is: Scripture. Buckle up.