Have you ever met an older cranky person? And I don’t mean just irritable during a long line at the grocery store or overly opinionated at the family gathering. I mean the ‘life is always half empty; no one is trustworthy; hide your money everyone is out to get it; life is never worth it; type of cranky older person. I’m sure at some point in life you have encountered a person like this. They are cold, harsh, and usually difficult to get along with. I think if you would have gone back in time to one of those individuals and asked them when they were 25yrs old if they wanted to be that person when they were 75yrs old, they’d say “No way! I would never want to become that! or “I will never become that because my grandfather was like that person”. But, to their dismay and disbelief they somehow end up becoming that person in their latter days of life. Why? Small decisions, small grudges, small negativity, small unthankfulness begins a snowball of bitterness within us. These small decisions soon affect our perception of life and determine our emotions and overall outlook. As we choose people to be within our life they can either help or hinder us. There is never a day in our lives that our perception and the people we allow into our lives don’t matter. There is never a day that is wasted. Each day matters yet we rarely think about consequences. We don’t stop and comprehend the decision I am making today greatly affects my tomorrow. Not just decisions about money or assets, but attitude decisions, and relationship decisions. Especially those of us in the millennial age bracket, this is not usually on the top of the list. We are all about right now. This moment. Future consequences aren’t automatically the first thing that comes into our mind, immediate pleasure and gratification is. I have a son who will be 4yrs old in a few months and we are currently trying to teach him the principle of decisions have consequences. Part of me thinks that for some people, no matter their age, this principle never clicked. We often want what others have, but we don’t want to make the daily decisions they made. Life is made up of sequences of small daily decisions. The attitude decisions, and relationship decisions determine our perspective about life. All anchored in simple things, but yet, build the life we will live tomorrow.
In the book of Psalms there are two groups of people continually compared against each other. The Godly and the wicked. Psalm 1 is an amazing picture of these two types of people. There are 3 words that stand out to me when I was studying this chapter. Walk, stand, and sit.
Ps 1:1-2 “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; 2 but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night”
The opening line of this chapter says “Blessed is the man”. To be blessed is something we would all want. Some definitions say to be blessed means: to be divinely favored. I love how the author wanted us to have the keys to find that blessing. We can see from the text that it is small decisions that lead us into a blessed life. Here are 3 observations from this Psalm.
WALK. “who walks not in the counsel of the wicked”
Many commentators write that the word picture of the words ‘walk in the counsel’ speaks to the people you spend constant time with, or people walking in the same direction in life as you. Essentially they are talking about people who have your ear. Every person around you might have a place in your life, but not every person should have a voice in your life.
The first thing this psalmist says about a man who has a blessed life is he chooses who he walks with. He chooses who has his ear. He chooses who surrounds him.
Who are you walking with? Who has your ear the most?
STAND. “nor stands in the way of sinners”
The hebrew word picture of stand is an image of one who stands confidently and consistently in the same place. The psalmist is saying a blessed man is one whose lifestyle is CONSISTENT and does not block those coming to God. It is a sobering thought that the way we stand (the lifestyle we live), can detour people from God and actually be a hinderance. I believe one of the main ways we “stand in the way”, is with a religious and self-righteous mindset.
How is your stance before people who don’t know God? Is it helping or hindering them seeing God correctly?
SIT. “nor sits in the seat of scoffers”
Positions can change everything. In a movie theater, the movie can be really good or really bad based on the seat you are sitting in. Why? Because position changes your perspective. The writer says a man is blessed when he doesn’t sit in the judgment seat.
What seat have you chosen to sit in when it comes to others? The seat of a scoffer is one of criticism and cynical thinking. We are seated with Christ, which is a seat of faith, hope, and love.
What seat are you currently sitting in?
Want to live a blessed life? Want to be the really happy and full of life person in your 80s? Walk with the right people. Live a consistent lifestyle. Have the right perspective about others. These are daily decisions that make a huge impact.