Teach me thy way, O LORD, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.
Maybe it’s odd, but what hits me when I read this verse is the last phrase: “because of mine enemies”. The word translated “because” can indicate motive or purpose, so it makes sense that the reason David is praying to learn God’s ways is the existence of his enemies.
The commentaries I read seem to agree that one’s enemies are looking for failure, and a plain (level, straight) path will keep us from falling prey to their traps. I wonder, though, if a level path in God’s way, could be good for our enemies as well as for us.
What if our enemies saw the way of love? What if our enemies watched us walk in the way of peace and patience despite their best efforts to fluster or offend? What if our enemies observed our Spirit-birthed joy in the middle of the brokenness of life? What if, instead of tripping on the trap of pride, we walked in the way of meekness and gentleness?
…how our enemies might be changed!