How Do I Stay Out of Trouble? (The Best Answer I’ve Found)

I’m still thinking about this one question that everyone asks online.

I think of you.

I haven’t met you or know anything about you, but I’m guessing that you asked this question because your heart wants to be good. You want to do the right thing and become the person you’re supposed to be. You want to stay in school, stay off drugs, stop drinking, stop breaking the law, and finally make some good choices. You want a great future! You want happiness and prosperity!

But you just keep getting into trouble. 

I was thinking about you last night and your question. It turns out that you aren’t the only one who has asked this question. Great and mighty kings asked this question, as did the ancient prophets. In Psalm 119 in the Bible (written most likely as early at 530 BC), the question is posed by a great man:

“How can a young person stay on the right path in life?”

The writer provides the best answer ever.

Here are verses 9-16:

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. 
13 I

I read this Psalm and realize that the answer to your question is this:

1. Seek God with all your heart
2. Ask Him to help you keep his commands
3. Read and study God’s word (the Bible) so you know what those commands are

And guess what? The writer finds great joy and delight in living according to God’s rules. It’s better than wealth! In fact, by “only walking in God’s paths” (verse 3) and by carefully obeying God, you will  find true happiness (verse 35), your life purpose (verse 37), real freedom (verse 45), amazing comfort (verse 50), abundant blessings (verse 58), all the hope you need (verse 81), great wisdom (verse 100), refreshment for your soul (verse 156), and most importably, a deep love and connection to God (what you were made for).

I love how Psalm 119 ends in the New Living Translation:

I have wandered away like a lost sheep; come and find me. . . 

So that’s your answer, and it’s the best one I know. I pray that if you have wandered, you will let yourself be found by God today.

Here’s the full text of Psalm 119 for you.


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