Psalms Project: Psalm 1 – Planted or Seated?

Today, I am beginning a project I have wanted to do for many years – a journey through the Psalms. I have started before, alone, but I am hoping that the accountability of a blog (and your comments, etc.) will encourage me to keep going. I plan to write about every Psalm (150 of them) in order.

The stirring Psalm 1 (go read it first!) is my favorite Psalm (at least for now) and is an appropriate beginning to this collection of Israel’s praise and worship. In just six verses, the writer (who is unknown) paints a vivid contrast between the wise and the wicked. And he (or she) provides the wisdom and motivation we need for finding daily nourishment.

It becomes a simple question of whether we choose to be seated or planted. The unwise person is seated. There is a progression here. The unwise person begins walking with the wicked, then stands around with the sinners, and finally settles into a seat with the scoffers. Now the unwise has become wicked like those around him. As a result, there is no blessing from God. He or she becomes dry, useless, and blown away like chaff. There will be no place to stand in the judgment. The wicked will perish. Why would anyone choose this curse? Sadly, too many do.

The writer promises, though, that we will be blessed if we do not choose that dried-up doom. Instead, the righteous one is like the tree planted by the river, always nourished and never wilting. That is the life of blessing I want! How does it happen? I let God plant me in His Word (here called “the law”). I must meditate on it day and night. Meditation in the Bible is not the mind-emptying silliness practiced by eastern religions. Instead, Christian meditation is the active reflection upon and digesting of God’s truth. Like the tree in the picture, I should be leaning toward the water and sending out a multitude of roots into its quenching flow. I can study the Word; I can ponder its impact in my life; I can practice its rules and wisdom; I can mull its truths; I can recite it, sing it, memorize, and pray it. God’s Word imparts life, if I soak it in. It becomes an inseparable part of who I am. Thus, I am blessed and can expect to grow.

How about you? Will you choose to be planted into God’s life-giving Word today? Or will you sit down and dry up with those who perish?

Celtic Christian artist Eden’s Bridge has a lovely rendition of this Psalm called “Blessed is the Man.” Listen as you soak in the beauty of this first Psalm.

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13 thoughts on “Psalms Project: Psalm 1 – Planted or Seated?

  1. I choose to be Planted!!! Great Word!!! 🙂

  2. Peggi Tustan says:

    I love Psalm 1. The picture you chose illustrates it beautifully. Great words of encouragement, Sean. I am look forward to reading your insights on the rest of the Psalms.

    • Sean Durity says:

      Thank you, Peggi. I am looking forward to a long journey through the Psalms. They include both the most familiar and least known parts of Scripture. The discipline will be good for me.

  3. Donald Miller says:

    Your Psalms Project is off to a very good start. I like your writing style.

  4. You’ve struck a chord here, Sean. Stay with this. I look forward to reading each one. You know how I feel about the Psalms!

  5. Journeying through the Psalms is an awesome journey! I’ve been studying and blogging one a week and have reached Psalm 103. I have trouble narrowing my focus to just one or two concepts per Psalm, because they are so full of relationship actions between God and men. If all we had was the Psalms, we would still learn a lot about the character of our God! (found you through Lori Freeland’s site:)

    • Sean Durity says:

      You are so right. I am a bit intimidated about trying to deal with the “main point” for each Psalm. Some of them have so much depth. But, my thought is that the blog comments give me a place that I can put other thoughts along side my original post as the weeks/years go by. I can collect wisdom in a re-usable way. Thanks for the visit!

  6. Daron Henson says:

    @ Sean – Interesting idea for a blog post. I would have liked to hear more about your thoughts on the psalm. However, keep posting them and I will continue reading them.

    • Sean Durity says:

      I appreciate you stopping by. As I mentioned below (above?) I will put other thoughts in the comments for the posts, I think. I am still learning the ropes for blogs. Generally, I think shorter posts are more “approachable,” but there is certainly an opportunity for more depth. Hopefully I will be learning the Psalms and honing my blogging technique as I go. Psalm 2 is percolating now…

  7. […] Psalm 1: Planted or Seated? Rate this: Spread the Durt:TwitterFacebookDiggEmailStumbleUponPinterestRedditLike this:LikeBe the […]

  8. […] up with the Psalms Project? Psalm 1: Planted or Seated? Psalm 2:  Safe, Not Shackled Rate this:Spread the […]

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