I have been meditating on Psalm 1 the last couple of days. And like most everything else, it is spinning me off on a rabbit trail…
O How Happy
There is a direct and unmistakeable link to a persons’ emotional state and who they listen to. Oh how happy is the one who is NOT heeding the counsel of those who don’t have a passionate, personal, growing relationship with Jesus (with the end goal of being like the ones they are taking advice from). Instead, they find great delight in God’s word, so much so they roll it around in their hearts and their minds day and night.
Would to God that in the endeavors we are participating we would never replace the “time well spent” simply reading His word, retelling ourselves His word, thinking on His word and mulling over the words, names, phrases, repetitions that ‘pop’ to the surface. The word “Entertain” comes to mind.
“To receive into the house and treat with hospitality, either at the table only, or with lodging also.
To keep, hold or maintain in the mind with favor; to reserve in the mind; to harbor; to cherish. Let us entertain the most exalted views of the Divine character. It is our duty to entertain charitable sentiments towards our fellow men.”
-Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary of the American English Language
As bits and pieces of God’s word come to our remembrance, entertain them. Ask yourself “What’s being said or done here? What could have been said or done?” And muse on it. Great happiness will be found, treasures undug, lying dormant, waiting to be discovered.
We Americans are great at reading the Bible through over and over, and there is great benefit from this. But are we able to slow to an imperceptible crawl (apparently) and really take our time in theses precious passages, mining them with joy to see how Jesus is made known better to us?
“When He came into the world He said, “Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, but a body You have prepared for Me…Lo, I have come (in the volume of the book it is written of Me), to do Thy will, O God.”
Hebrews 10:5 & 7
Where is Jesus in my reading? Where do I see Jesus in this passage?
Now, I am NOT saying we twist the scriptures until we think we see Jesus. Rather, read the scriptures, close your eyes and try to recite to yourself what you just read (to the best of your ability), read it again (see a pattern?), until you have a pretty good grasp on the text. And then allow the Holy Spirit to begin to speak to you from what you are reading.
*I know I am preaching to the choir.* But choirs go over songs again and again and again until they are proficient enough to perform…and there still is room for improvement, true?*
The result? Being like the tree that is firmly rooted and established, bearing fruit in time to the glory of God, heat and drought and blight coming and even in the midst of it your leaf shall not wither and God Himself will bless the labor of your hands, your relationships, your marriage, your children, your ministry.
O How Unhappy
Those who don’t find delight in “knowing God and making Him known…by letting myself be known (to coin a new twist on an old phrase- Click Here) are anchored to nothing. They live out their substanceless lives at the mercy of the prevailing trend, thought or breeze, that is here one second and gone the next, ever being blown towards their own unending end, miserable that it is, in it’s realization and in it’s reality.
They are chaff.
They are chaff driven.
They shall not stand, implying they will fall.
Neither in the judgment, at which they will fully realize their great lack at having lived intangible lives,
Nor in the congregation of the righteous, where they were supposed to be, but their eyes are now opened, maybe for the first time, to the horror that the path they tread their whole life long is to perpetually crumble under their feet for all eternity, never landing, never gaining solid purchase, grasping and gasping that they are lost and can never be found.
“How Can We Know The Way?”
Jesus replied, “I am the way…”
There is no shortcut, no alternative route (no, not even on Google Maps) to walking the way of the righteous than getting to know Jesus.
May I encourage you in your reading of His word…slow down, walk the path slowly, and allow yourself (and encourage your people) that this is not a contest, we’re looking for Jesus.