Happy are those
who do not follow the advice of the wicked,
or take the path that sinners tread,
or sit in the seat of scoffers;
but their delight is in the law of the LORD,
and on his law they meditate day and night.
They are like trees
planted by streams of water,
which yield their fruit in its season,
and their leaves do not wither.
In all that they do, they prosper.
The wicked are not so,
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment
nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous;
for the LORD watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.
Faith and Happiness
Psalm 1 tells us profoundly that happiness is the knowledge that your life belongs to God. Happiness through faith is that you have a source for your very being, for your creation, for the choices you make, and for our walk in the journey of this life with Christ and His love for each of us. Happiness comes from being deeply rooted in God. The psalmist tells us to be like the trees planted so that they have deep roots in living waters. The trees will not wither but will grow and prosper and that is what God wants for our lives. Happiness is not so much a feeling as we think in modern times but the ability to praise God and seek God’s will for our lives and to know God chooses us always.
Failing to trust God and not making a spiritual connection with God leads to unhappiness. It causes us to live unbalanced lives with only a focus on our own successes or needs. “Wickedness” as brought out in this Psalm is caused by unwillingness or inability or lack of desire to trust God. It is demonstrated by making ourselves Lord of our own lives and “doing alright” by ourselves. We are not to live our lives based simply on how we feel but on what we choose. Happiness as expressed in Psalm 1 is a state of being in which we daily praise God and this understanding of happiness is not just based upon a particular feeling.
Being mature and responsible people filled with the Holy Spirit comes through the connection with God and Jesus Christ. Happiness follows the making of a whole commitment to God. Struggling with physical and mental illness and brokenness and pain in our lives comes with the humanness of our existence. For those who believe and reach out to receive God’s love and healing, their joy will be in the Lord. Our hope and our happiness is found in the love we receive from God and the praise we offer to God.
Prayer: Dear Lord, Help us feel your love and know it is not based on our performance but on your perfect ability to love. Your love is always present through living water that flows in never ending abundance. Happy is the person who knows that God lives in their hearts and minds and raises praise to God and follows the example of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Rev. Sharon A. MacVean