Psalm 1:1-3 1 Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. 2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. 3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers.
The beginning of Psalm 1 has always been special to me. It describes the journey to a Godly life. It’s a simple summary or overview of what not to do; what to do; and the results of a life so lived. It’s like a father talking with a son or daughter and giving them counsel that will help them in all they do. The counsel appears to be general in nature yet presents a clear picture of the types of actions required to have a blessed life.
The principles are really common to us because they exist in all areas of life. No matter what goal we’re seeking, there are things and distractions to avoid, an attitude of heart to have, things to embrace, and the results consistent with such actions. Sports, music, school, marriage, child-raising, work, life – it makes no difference, the counsel applies.
Years ago, I was teaching in a private school and in the summer following my third year there, the school without warning closed. With a family to support, I wound up in sales – not somewhere I thought I would ever be. Lots of people fail at sales or only marginally succeed. Many of those around me failed because they wouldn’t discipline themselves. They did not avoid the distractions, actions and associations with others that undermined what they were trying to learn. They did not approach the job whole-heartedly.
If we’re supposed to be on the phone, making prospect calls, we can’t be daydreaming, reading other stuff or talking with others who are in the process of failing as well. If we’re supposed to be studying, there’s TV, talking, messaging or tweeting. There are things and people and ‘stuff’ that call us – distract us – keep us, from attaining the goal we set. But we must recognize the issue is us!
Great are the rewards of avoiding the pitfalls, and whole-heartedly pursing the actions that enable us to attain a worthy goal. We must recognize that this reality applies to our relationship with the Lord. The result we achieve will be commensurate to what we do and how we do it.