For the Lord knows (or approves of) the way of the righteous,
But the way of the wicked will perish. (Psalm 1:6 NASB)
Does the Lord approve of the direction I am moving? He knows what I’m going to do, but are my actions gaining His approval? In Psalm 1, I learn several choices that I can make to gain His approval.
1. Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked.
If the counsel that I am receiving contradicts scripture, I should discard it. Galatians 5:22-23 lists a few of the blessings that I’ll receive if I choose the Counsel of the Holy Spirit instead of flawed humans: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. What’s great about this list is that it’s never illegal to practice these characteristics!
2. Blessed is the man who doesn’t stand in the way of sinners.
If I am surrounding myself with objects or characteristics rooted in a lifestyle that is contrary to scripture, I should flee. Galatians 5:19-21 lists a few of the sinful choices that I should avoid: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, etc. WOW! I failed already! Thank God I have a Saviour who identifies with my weakness and wants to help me follow him!
3. His delight is in the Law of the Lord, and he meditates on it.
If I want to resist the temptation to fall into any of the traps listed above, I must delight in the Law of the Lord, and I must meditate on it day and night! For me, I must meditate daily (and nightly) on 2 Corinthians 10:5 “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” After I let that penetrate my thoughts, I put my faith into action with the help of Hebrews 12:1-3 “Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”
My just God, give me the discernment to know the difference between sound versus shady advice. Give me a desire to know your law so that my feet may be firmly planted by streams of living water. Increase my faith to know that you will bring the harvest at the right time, pruning what needs pruned, to reap the most bountiful harvest. Oh gracious God, that I may find favor in your sight so that I will have a life of prosperity and not utter ruin.