Choose Happiness … by Sara Scates

Today’s Reading – Psalms 1 – 8 (Click on the references to listen to the audio – Click hereto view the passage from Blue Letter Bible)

(Second Milers also read – Philemon – Hebrews 4Psalms 81 – 85Proverbs 17)

Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Proverbs 3:5 & 6

Read the  “0617 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon

Read previous posts from this passage – Kiss the Son and A Recipe for Success.”

“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. The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.” (Psalm 1:1-6)

Who doesn’t want to be happy? Many individuals spend their entire lives seeking happiness. People look to the future and see themselves being happy once they attain certain goals, or acquire certain wealth, or purchase certain things. Many, when these things don’t bring them the happiness they were longing for, then resort to substances or experiences that bring happiness, or at least a temporary escape from their unhappiness.  Unfortunately however, none of these things are the key to happiness.

Psalm 1 starts off with “Blessed is the man…”. Translated, we could replace the word blessed with happy or content. In this passage, we learn some simple truths that we can apply to live a happy, content, or blessed life.  

 “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.” (Psalm 1:1)

This verse is instructing us on what a blessed man does NOT do. There is a way he should not walk, a path he should not stand in, and a seat he should not sit in. Staying away from these three things mentioned here will bring blessings, happiness, and contentment.  

The first instruction here is to stay away from the counsel of the ungodly.  People like to offer advice and share opinions. Well meaning individuals may have wisdom to share that seems to make sense, but is it really godly?  The world tells us what is good and what is right, but would God agree? God’s word is always the best counselor and godly counselors will always use God’s word as the basis for their counsel.  

The second thing we see here is that it is important to not stand in the way of sinners. Sinners and the righteous should not be heading in the same direction. Sometimes this means we have to take the road less traveled.  Matthew 7:13-14 states: 

“Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” (Matthew 7:13-14)

Lastly, in verse 1 we see that a blessed or happy man should not sit in the seat of the scornful. Scornful people are unhappy people. They enjoy criticizing others. Sitting in the company of people that enjoy being critical and finding faults in other people and things will not bring happiness or blessings.  

Instead, verse 2 tells us what we should seek after in order to find happiness:

“But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.” (Psalm 1:2)

True happiness is found in the word of God! A blessed, happy, or righteous man delights in God’s word. The verse goes on to say that one should meditate on it day and night. Listening to a sermon one morning a week is not enough. Skimming through a few verses most mornings is not enough.  Meditating on the word day and night will help us to stay in the right frame of mind and find happiness. This first chapter of Psalms compares the righteous man to the ungodly man. Choose to be the righteous man. Choose happiness!

The Scates Family – Sara, Lexi, and Jeremiah

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