Psalm 1

Day 1: The Orphan Bookend

Psalm 1
Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked 
or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, 
but whose delight is in the law of the LORD, and who meditates on his law day and night.
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, 
which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither—whatever they do prospers.
Not so the wicked! They are like chaff that the wind blows away.
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.
For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, 
but the way of the wicked leads to destruction.
What even are the Psalms? 
I have often wondered that myself. But they’re in the Bible for a reason. For some reason, God wanted us to read them. And there are A LOT of them! They are beautiful poems and songs, but is there more that we can apply to our lives?
This study will hopefully allow us to learn more about God’s heart, and why this ancient book was–and is–so important to God’s children.


And at the same time, why the book is so very important to our faith.

But first things first.
The Psalter (i.e. a funny name for “the Book of Psalms” as a whole) was probably put together into the book we know now somewhere in the 4th century BC by post-exilic Jewish temple attendants…meaning those guys who just returned to Jerusalem after being exiles for 70+ years. 


So, yea, that must’ve been an exciting time!

The book is a wonderful collection of ancient Israel’s most important prayers and praises. These songs or poems were used in worship, in the temple or synagogue. I imagine some of them were even read outside of the original tabernacle.
Only God knows for sure who wrote the Psalms, but many of the individual Psalms are signed! 
How cool is that?! 
Psalm 1 & 2 are not signed, which makes smart Bible people refer to them as “books ends,” kind of like an introduction.
So Psalm 1 is a book end for the first 41 psalms, also called “book 1.” 
Okay, lovely little Orphan Psalm #1, what can you teach me?
The poem opens with the word “blessed.” 
bless-ed (adjective): made holy; consecrated
consecrated (adjective): having been made or declared sacred
sacred (adjective): connected with God
Please, I want to be blessed, declared sacred, and connected with God! The author here (God Himself, obviously, because no one else signed it) clearly says the way to be blessed…
1) Don’t keep walking in SIN, or hanging out with SIN, or sitting in the company of SIN! (note: we all sin, but this says don’t keep doing it!)
2) Revere the LORD and His Word.
3) Study IT!
God goes on to say the one who does these things above–the blessed one–is like a tree with fruit and beautiful leaves that lives by streams of water! And everything she does prospers….Sounds wonderful!
Well, I don’t always feel like that? I more often feel like the chaff that’s so easily blown away by a breeze. Am I the only one?
I often feel like “what am I doing?” and “who even cares?” Like, I am here for my family, for my mom and my sisters, for my best friend and others that I love. I run errands and cook meals and clean the house and walk the dogs, and I try to teach my children the way that they should go. And I pray, goodness, do I pray! 

Why does it never seem like, at the end of the day, that I did enough, especially when I fall into bed exhausted?

Friend, if you were to tell me that all you did today was take of your sick child and make meals that weren’t appreciated and clean up messes and clutter and you didn’t even have the time or the energy to brush your own hair...


I would say, WAY TO GO! 

You have done the ultimate in self sacrifice; you have unconditionally loved your family and given of yourself. You have pleased your Heavenly Father and He looks down upon you and smiles. 

But…those words don’t apply to me. Why? 

Or maybe the words that I speak to remind you don’t sink into your heart either. You hear them and can nod and smile, but they don’t sink in. I don’t know. 

But even though I block them from my own heart and maybe you do too, I know that those words are TRUTH. Hear them, my friend.


You may not feel like the tree with fruit and beautiful leaves with cool crisp running water and all that you do prospers, but THAT, my friend, is how God sees you. There isn’t always fruit; it says “fruit in season.” God is seasoning your fruit. But it does say that all she does prospers. The one who delights in the LORD drinks of the stream and all that she does prospers. 

It does not say that she sees it. But God does.

I know this, but all too often I do not drink of that stream, of that life giving, sustaining water. Do I think I can do it myself? Do I think I know better? Do I not care? Am I so exhausted that, although I know what I need to do, I cannot bring myself to do just one more thing in a day? 

There is a lesson in this Psalm for you and me, and the end says it clearly. Are you the fruitful tree drinking of the sustaining water? Or are you the chaff blown in the breeze?

The Lord watches over the path of the righteous. 

When life is hard. When being parent and spouse and sibling and friend is draining…when you are thirsting for love, for acknowledgment, for your worth…drink of the water and KNOW it will sustain you as your fruit grows and in God’s eyes, all that you do prospers.

To drink of the water and be blessed: stop sinning! Read God’s Word! Live God’s Word!!!

Father, sustain us with Your living water. As we struggle to be all that You ask of us, sustain us. When it feels that all we do all day long is to give and give and give, sustain us. Father, thank You that our worth is in You, that You love us and walk beside us, that You are growing our fruit and using all that we do to further Your Kingdom.  Strengthen us to love and encourage each other, and to continue to give of ourselves even when we FEEL like we are empty. Amen.
In Him,

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