Planted by the Stream (Psalm 1)

PsalmsBlessed is the one….whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
    and who meditates on his law morning 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. (Psalm 1)

Happy New Year. I’m a wreck!

Never have I began a new year with this much weariness and trepidation. The past year has been difficult for me: depression, anxiety, stress, poor habits, finding comfort in junk food and escaping through television and books.

Oh, there have been many, many blessings and bright spots: my loving family, the joys of fatherhood, many church and ministry milestones, God’s faithful financial provision, new friends and more.

But I have been like a fish out of water, a plant uprooted; I have been trying to find delight in the wrong places, and am, frankly, withering inside and out. Never have I needed a fresh start like this year. I am a goalsetter, and I always have some resolutions. But this year I found myself too weary to even think about “buckling down” and “getting things in order” or making the proper changes…..

That’s the problem, isn’t it?  Its those who are most empty, dry, tired, depressed who need the resolve to make needed changes. And it is exactly such folks who are least likely to find the energy, motivation and resolve to do anything about their misery….and the downward spiral continues.

So…withered and dry, parched and thirsty, I crawled on my hands and knees to the Psalms to begin this new year. I want to begin and end each day this year by meditating on the Psalms. I will share some reflections (hopefully) here at Daily Illumination.

Psalm 1 is a powerful kick in the butt to begin the New Year. Consider its themes: Which path are you going to choose this year? Which crowd are you going to run with? Where are you going to find your delight this year? What thoughts do you want to bring to bed with you? What messages do you want to hear first when you wake up? Ultimately, where are planting yourself this year?

As for me and my house, I resolve this year to delight in God’s Word and meditate on it day and night. I resolve to plant myself by the life-giving stream that is God’s Truth, and by doing so I pray that I will regain my strength, my purpose, my passion and yield much fruit for God’s Kingdom this new year.

Yes, I want to have a prosperous 2013 — not by the world’s standards or by following the world’s wisdom; but by following “the way of the righteous” (1:6).

Are you planted by the stream, or withering in a barren land? 

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