Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Sunday, February 21, 2016
“Blessed is the man That walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor standeth in the way of sinners, Nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; And in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, That bringeth forth his fruit in his season; His leaf also shall not wither; And whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.” (Psalm 1:1–3).
Now, hear this: If you want to live a prosperous and blessed life, pay attention. I am going to give you the secret that eludes the masses and sometimes commands large sums of money from those who pursue it.
From the very beginning of this incredible psalm, the Lord gives us the keys to life, which, if we embrace them, will save us years of unnecessary vanity, troubles, and unfulfilled dreams. The Bible says that if we choose, in God’s strength, not to find pleasure in the evil of this world we will be blessed. When the Lord comes into our lives, our interactions with our unsaved friends change. Instead of enjoying evil entertainments, course jokes, forbidden drinking and carousing together, the Lord has sent us on a mission of mercy to teach our friends the ways of righteousness. We no longer stand, sit, or walk in agreement with the world’s evil customs. Rather, when we do invest our time with our old friends, God is looking for a way for our testimonies to impact their lives such that they find walking with God desirable.
Now, I must admit that this is easier said than done considering all the various ways the world’s customs pervade our lives, but the Lord did not leave us without a plan. He said that we should delight ourselves in His Word and meditate on it day and night. Do you find pleasure in reading, studying, and meditating upon God’s Word? Have you learned to explore the Scriptures and revel in the many ways God has delivered His children from danger, healed their wounded past lives, and given us hope in hopeless situations? Have you learned to find pleasure in praying His words to Him as you press through your trials? Have you learned to speak His words aloud in low tones as you read during your personal devotions so you do not miss one word? Have you learned to open the Bible when you have insomnia or are startled out of your sleep in the middle of the night? If so, becoming the Lord’s ambassador to those who are perishing in their sins becomes a function of the power of the Holy Spirit and the authority of the Word in which you delight.
Trees that have been deliberately planted in locations where they can draw adequate water up through their roots will not whither.
The Lord has not only promised us power to reach the perishing when we delight in and meditate upon His Word. He also promised prosperity in all that we do. Notice the imagery He used here. Trees that have been deliberately planted in locations where they can draw adequate water up through their roots will not whither. I don’t know if you’ve ever planted a tree before, but I can tell you from experience that having adequate water is key. I have planted crab apple, pear, royal empress, eucalyptus, peach, cherry, willow, myrtle, and moringa trees. The key to their survival was proper watering. The Bible says that those who find delight in His Word will have a built in water source that will directly contribute to their fruitfulness. They will not wither or dry up. They will bear much fruit and their fruit are evidence of them prospering.
So if you want to be successful in life according to God’s particular plan for your life (we all are different), learn to find pleasure in and meditate upon God’s Word and teach others to do the same. If you do so, God’s richest blessings will overtake you and people will learn to follow Him through your example. You will be directly linked to Jesus the source of all life and you will bear much fruit.
Here is one more passage for your meditation: “Blessed is the man that trusteth in the LORD, and whose hope the LORD is. For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be careful in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.” (Jeremiah 17:7–8).