A few decades ago, Charles Swindoll began a ministry called Insight for Living. Its mission statement is: Insight for Living is committed to excellence in communicating the truths of Scripture and the Person of Jesus Christ in an accurate, clear and practical manner so people will come to an understanding of God’s plan for their lives, as well as their significant role as authentic Christians in a needy, hostile and desperate world.
Centuries before Swindoll wrote his Insight for Living mission statement, the psalmist gave us his version of insights for living. Essentially they are lessons for a life-long journey with God.
Let’s travel together in our journey, gathering David’s insights for living!
Insight 1: Be Open to God’s Teaching (Ps. 119:33)
What does God want to teach us? His statutes and laws to help us live life to the fullest. The psalmist did not specifically name the laws of God as he assumed his readers would know them. The laws encapsulated within the Ten Commandments are the basic fabric of individual and societal life. For the psalmist, this is basic if we are to be authentic in our lives.
Fast forward to the New Testament, where Jesus was in deep conversation with one of the religious scholars of His day. After a sharp exchange of questions and answers, the scholar asked which of the commandments was the most important. Jesus said, “The first in importance is, ‘Listen, Israel: The Lord your God is one; so love the Lord God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence and energy’ Here is the second: ‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’ There is no other commandment that ranks with these” (
These laws from God are what we are to follow!
Insight 2: Be Open to Understand God’s Teaching (v. 34)
There is more than being taught lessons in life; we must understand those lessons. When my son was in little league, I was his team’s assistant baseball coach. Our objective was to teach the team the basic plays and drills. Their job was to understand the plays and practice them until those plays became natural to them.
God has given us the basic laws of life, and we are to learn and review them until we understand them and they become part of our natural walk in life.
It is one thing to talk about prayer, but it is another thing to practice prayer. We can have a dozen Bibles around the house, but what is the value until we open and read a Bible? It is great to talk about being a church member, but it is another to be committed and faithful to the body of Christ.
Insight 3: Be Obedient to God’s Teaching (v. 35)
Obedience is from the heart. It is not a have-to basis, but a want-to basis. Our desire is to trust and obey God. He will give us the motivation and energy to follow Him on a daily basis as we open our hearts to Him. As we do this, our hearts are cleansed and filled with His Holy Spirit, and He gives us the power to live for Christ.
Obedience leads us to surrender to the commands of God.
Obedience does not come from fear, but from a righteous heart.
Obedience is the essential characteristic of our lives that is unquestionable and implicit in following Jesus.
Insight 4: Be Revived Through God’s Presence (v. 40)
“The theme of revival is sustained in this strophe. As the psalmist is restored to life by the power of God, he must grow in that life.” (Don Williams in the Communicator’s Commentary).
This revival, renewal or restoration of life is found in Christ. Paul grasped that truth when he wrote to the church at Corinth: “Because we believe Christ died for all of us, we also should believe we have died to the old life we used to live. He died for all so all who live—having received eternal life from Him—might live no longer for themselves, to please themselves, but to spend their lives pleasing Christ who died and rose again” (
To be in constant revival is to be in God’s Presence:
Repent of our sins
Experience the holiness of God
Victoriously triumph over our failures
Involve ourselves in the life of Christ and others
Envision God’s mission as essential for our spiritual survival through faith, spawned by hope and sparked by imagination and strengthened by enthusiasm
Accept His forgiveness and holiness on a daily basis
Live life to the fullest through Christ our Savior
Let God give you His special insights for living personally!