Great blessings belong to those
who don’t listen to evil advice,
who don’t live like sinners,
and who don’t join those who make fun of God.
Instead, they love the Lord’s teachings
and think about them day and night.
So they grow strong,
like a tree planted by a stream—
a tree that produces fruit when it should
and has leaves that never fall.
Everything they do is successful.
I love Psalm 1 because it is direct. There aren’t fifty shades of gray. When I read this I think this is a no brainer; avoid wicked council and embrace God’s word. I considered titling this post The Benefit of Either or Thinking. Either you choose to put on the mind of Christ and thrive, or you don’t and languish.
I was feeling pretty good about myself. I know better than to walk with wicked, stand with sinners, and sit with scoffers. I am extremely guarded about who I allow to speak into my life. I have a mental profile of that wicked-scoffing-sinner type person. I’m sure you do too. What if it’s not a physical person that the enemy uses? What if Satan, himself, subtly whispers ungodly council to your spirit.
For years the enemy told me not to engage in ministering to women. He reminded me of my past sins and told me I’d be ineffective. So, I participated in women’s ministry, but the desire to minister to women was aborted. Before I knew it, I had grown cynical about women’s ministry. I viewed it as nothing more than a fundraising social club for big girls. In my head, I knew 2 Corinthians 1:3-4. I understood that God uses us to comfort others with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. However, in my heart, I scoffed at the idea of God using me to minister to other women.
I was on guard for that evil person. I was careful to read the Word, surround myself with other believers, and attend church. However, I underestimated the subtle ways the enemy was moving in my inner thoughts. Before I knew it, I was taking a leisurely stroll down Woe Is Me Lane. Then, I took up residency in Self-doubt Park where I began to blame God for my homelessness.
Just knowing God’s word is not enough. As the Psalmist says, we must fall in love with God’s word. We must meditate on God’s word continually, and use it to fight the war the enemy wages in our mind. When we do this we are strong. We are fruitful. We are prosperous.