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. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. 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. Not so the wicked! They are like chaff that the wind blows away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous. For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.
I must apologize for my forgetfulness. I only realized after noon today (Saturday), that it WAS Saturday and my Friday to post had slipped away without my noticing.
I will not apologize, however, for my love of poetry; my love of word pictures and comparisons, of which this Psalm is packed FULL!!!
Just read the first line again…see it in your mind:
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. Walk, stand, sit. Each of us does these things daily. These are ordinary things, mundane things, things done without much thought for the majority of us, anyway. Blessed are those who do not allow the ordinariness of life to to bring them down to the level of those who gossip and complain and mock - sinful distractions from true delight. Blessed are those who can look past negative distractions to find delight in the law of the LORD…
Now I don't want to get into a big debate about what it means that the law was abolished by Jesus' death and resurrection. My heart, when thinking upon the law of the LORD understands it best when hearing the reply of Jesus as found in Matthew 22:36-40:
“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” (emphasis mine)
"…and on his law he meditates day and night"
Love. We are to meditate on love day and night.
Why, then, is it so easy to sink into the darkness, into the negativity that surrounds us in life even when we are surrounded by love? Why does the darkness distract so easily when the beauty of love shines so brightly?
How I long to be as the one this Psalm describes:
"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."
…like a tree planted by streams of water. Deep rooted with multiple streams of nourishing, life-giving water, ever ready to refresh and renew; strong branches reaching up to the sunshine, towards the warmth that quickens the leaves and the buds to produce fruit. Fruit that comes in season-not too early and not late, but at just the right time, when all is in readiness to produce the most healthy, nutritious, flavourful, beautiful fruit. And leaves that do not wither.
The trees needs are always met…and always met right on time.
Whatever he does prospers. We do not often see the effects of many of the things we do. We have no idea that the littlest smile, the kind gesture, letting someone go ahead in the grocery line can impact another person in ways that the Holy Spirit can use. We may never know how God will use our tiniest acts of love to grow His kingdom, to make it thrive. Prosperity may not mean a big house, a large family, multiple cars or lack of financial, physical, emotional or spiritual struggles…maybe prosperity is an attitude that seeks out holiness and righteousness over all other hopes, desires and wants.
…not so the wicked whose idea of prosperity is power and wealth, material things that are abundant on this earth. They are not rooted in the love of the law that brings life. No. They are like chaff that the wind blows away. They are the garbage that the farmers don't want; worthless because no one wants to buy chaff with their grain because in it are no nutrients, nothing that will make anything grow or become stronger or better and so very easily blown away…just dust that clogs noses and throats and lungs making breathing difficult and painful.
The wicked will not stand in judgement…cannot stand. Cannot lift their faces under the weight of their own sinfulness. The mere presence of righteousness will be intolerable to them.
But the righteous will assemble and will stand, for God watches over the way of the righteous. Almighty God, the First and the Last, All Powerful, Commander of the angel armies knows the way of the righteous…is with us every step we take whether through dark times or times when the sun shines from every angle.
"But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold." (Job 23:10)
When He has tested us, may we also come forth as gold. May we dig deep our roots into the living truth of His Word, grow strong and bear beautiful fruit all in the proper season as He has prepared for each of us with gracious and compassionate Love.