God has chosen to reveal himself primarily through the written word. Certainly we see the works of his hands in the heavens. We can grow numb counting the stars. We get a breathless feeling from the brilliant colors of the sunrise. God certainly demonstrates his glory through our world, and he has revealed himself through his word.
Psalm 1 describes the great blessing that belongs to the men and women who delight and meditate upon his words. The book of the songs challenges men and women to never stop finding pleasure and framing our thoughts on his words. This psalm uses the image of a tree to illustrate four promises to those who delight and meditate upon the Lord's words.
They will be nourished. The tree is planted directly by the stream. It is tied directly to its source of life-giving nourishment and needs no help getting sustanence. Like the tree, men and women are not dependent upon others to bring them water. They can go straight to the life-giving source.
They will yield fruit in season. They will grow. They will produce. Their life will provide a way in which to measure its success. Like the tree, they will be able to look upon seasons of their lives and see what God has done.
They, as trees, will not wither. Withering comes from times of pressure and heat. The psalmist here implies that those who delight and meditate on the written word will be supplied with a source of endurance that is matched only by their devotion.
The fourth blessing to those who delight and center their thoughts around God's word is prosperity. The psalmist is not implying unyielding health and wealth but is describing the stability and security that come to those who delight themselves in God. It is a stability that is rich even when we are in poverty.
Never stop learning. Never stop thinking the thoughts of God. The rewards are too great when you do these things; the costs are too great when you stop.
Rob Hurtgen is a husband, father and serves as the associate pastor at the First Baptist Church in Jackson.