“Happy are those who do not follow the way of the wicked, or take the path that sinners tread, or sit in the seat of scoffers.” [Psalm 1:1]
The opening psalm of the Psalter sets the stage for how we are to live meaningfully abundant lives. I find it interesting though that the first line tells us how not to live. Don’t follow the way of the wicked. Don’t take the path that sinners tread. Don’t sit in the seat of scoffers. Why not? Isn’t this how people have gotten ahead over the eons. Use your power over and against others gaining every advantage you can no matter what it costs anyone else. This seems to be the play book of the world as we know it. And this is exactly why God said through the psalmist, “Don’t live like this.” It might look lucrative, but in reality in only leaves you wanting. Living this way creates an insatiable appetite for more that will never be quenched. So, dear children, God says, “Do not live that way.” The ways of the wicked, of sinners and of scoffers leads to destruction and death. Do you have any experiences when these paths all shiny and bright lured you to follow? I remember partnering with other girls in my 5th grade glass because I wanted to belong and be cool. It seemed like a good idea until I realized that what we had planned was designed to blatantly excluded one girl in our class. What we did was destructive to another soul and it certainly was to mine as well. Happy are those who do not follow the way of the wicked, indeed.
Mentoring God, you teach me the way to abundant life, yet I confess I am often a slow learner. I am lured by the gleam of power, wealth and success. I know that I have followed wrong paths, but thankfully you have forgiven my folly. Give me the courage to listen attentively to your teachings and then help me put them into practice daily. Amen.