I said to the Lord, ‘You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing”
“I have set the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”
“You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand
— Psalm 16 NIV

This psalm has affected my walk with the Lord more than most other passages in the bible. God regularly places these verses on my heart and teaches me new truths and applications each time. I am confronted by the greatness of God as David writes “You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing.” Too often, I focus on the blessings God gives me more than God himself. I become distracted by the gift and elevate it above the Lord. However, this verse brings me back into a place of recognizing that I have nothing good in my life outside of the grace of God. This verse leads me into a place of worship and gratitude centering around simply the character of God. 

The most frequent verse I have declared over myself in the last year is “I have set the Lord always before me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” A little over a year ago, I started addressing deep-rooted fears and anxieties in my life. All I could do was look at my fears and crumble under the weight of anxiety. I couldn’t focus on anything else, and I was easily thrown off by my thoughts of fear or worry. Yet, when I read this verse I am reminded of this life-changing truth. God is always with me, He is a firm foundation, and He is holding me tightly. The more I started to set God before me instead of my fears, the more my life looked grounded and unshakeable. Now, before I speak or do something scary, I declare this verse over myself and remind my heart that my God is at my right hand steadying my soul. 

One of the most recognizable shifts in my life as I gave my life to Jesus centers around His joy. The more I got to know God, the more I saw the difference between the happiness of the world and the joy of God. This joy overcomes trials and pain, this joy exists beyond circumstances, and this joy confronts the brokenness of the world with the wholeness of God. Everything made sense to me when I read “You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” Nothing compares to the joy of being in the presence of God. It’s life changing and perspective shifting. The world longs for joy and pleasure, and it looks for it in every other place than God. But true joy and pleasures are found in His presence and at His right hand.

a challenge

I challenge you to read this Psalm for yourself and allow God to speak to you through these verses. My prayer isn’t that this Psalm becomes your favorite, but I do pray that you know more of God’s goodness. That you know how He overcomes fear and anxiety. That you know the joy of being in His presence. 

- Tim