The happy, blessed person does not do some things but does do other things.
She does not—
Walk in the counsel of the ungodly,
Stand in the path of sinners
Sit in the seat of the scornful. (Psalms 1:1)
The happy person makes a conscious effort about who they hang out with, and who they allow to speak into their lives.
It’s not that happy Christians start communes, or hang out only in holy huddles, but they intentionally use discernment about who and what they allow to guide their thinking and actions.
And who we spend most of our time with and listen to matters!
Someone once said, “Show me your five closest friends and I’ll show you your future”.
We know the Apostle Paul tells us, “Bad company corrupts good character” (1 Cor 15:33) -so, if we mostly surround ourselves with those who are not seeking the ways of the Lord, we may find our ways to quickly get off track too!
But it’s not just what we don’t do (walk in the counsel of the ungodly, stand in the path of sinners, sit in the seat of the scornful) that matters, it is VERY MUCH what we do that also impacts our happiness-
The happy person delights in the law of the Lord! “And on His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf shall not wither, and whatever he does shall prosper.” (Psalm 1:2-3)
Think about this image for a moment- think about a tall, strong tree, whose roots are revived by a stream of water and whose branches bare much fruit. It’s leaves do not wither and it prospers.
This is a picture of strength and prosperity. This tree stands strong and weathers the storms. This tree can stand alone if need be.
But if we aren’t deliberately planting ourselves by streams of living water and daily being refreshed, strengthened and guided by God’s Holy Word, we may find ourselves in trouble, weak and ripe for attacks by the evil one.
No, let’s daily draw strength from the Word because, sometimes, maybe increasingly so in this hard world, we will find the need to stand strong and even possibly stand alone.
One of my kids is “standing alone” right now. He’s choosing God’s ways over the worlds way and some of those who he cares about deeply are pulling away from him because of it.
It is not easy and is pretty hurtful. But, he’s okay. He’s actually more than okay and is still one of the happiest people I know because he does not—walk in the counsel of the ungodly,
stand in the path of sinners, sit in the seat of the scornful-but he delights in the law of the Lord! And on His law he meditates day and night.
And he believes as he does this, God can cause prosperity (not as the world defines it, but as God does) to come from these hard days. And THAT is why my son is happy!
Friends, God’s Word is good! We can take it to the bank and it pays dividends!