Women’s Devotional Week 1: Psalm 1

Suggested listen: Poor Bishop Hooper, Psalm 1.

Read Psalm 1 in its entirety. Take a few deep breaths, then read it again slowly. 

1 Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, 

nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers;

2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on His law he meditates day and night.

3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, 

and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.

4 The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away.

5 Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, 

nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.

6 For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, 

but the way of the wicked will perish.

Take a moment to ponder and reflect on what stands out as you read. 

  • Do you have an emotional response? 
  • What is the knee-jerk reaction to these words?
  • What portion of the text grips your eyes? Where do they pause?

Let’s walk through this together…

Psalm One sits as a bit of a “foundation layer”. It points to the essential need to hide ourselves in the truth of scripture (Torah). The Word of God is our anchor, our joy, our illumination on the path to righteousness. These six verses serve as both an encouraging arrow and a warning light. 

Let’s break some down a bit.

VS 1 

Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers

Process of comfort/desensitization

We are immediately brought to see this trajectory of how our hearts can be gently compromised when our greatest desire veers away from the Word of God. We see this process of finding comfort outside of His care and desensitization begins to take place.  

  •     Walk in the counsel > taking advice and direction from those who are not like-minded and like-spirited. This is not the same as “hanging out” with sinners. This is not a mandate to separate or avoid relationships with unbelievers. This is a matter of where we place our trust and who we give permission to speak into our lives on a deep level. Taking counsel from those who do not share Kingdom belief or who don’t have a heart to see Jesus glorified in all things will always advise in the way of “self first”. It doesn’t take much to let words that conflict with the voice of Jesus take root (we are not better or more resilient than Eve). 
  •     Stand in the way > an emulating begins to take place once we’ve placed trust and truth in the advice and direction of non-believers. We begin to adopt their worldview, make their arguments, and position ourselves in a way that no longer resembles a Kingdom citizen. We look less and less like Christ, and more and more like the “other”. 
  •     Sit in the seat > An identity shift. This should resonate even clearer in this space in time when we are working so hard to take our sit as females at the table. Our confidence in who we are is what gives us the courage to take our seat. To sit down and rest in our right to be there. The difference here between the “blessed” and the “scoffer” is where their identity is rooted. The scoffer sits in a seat of disbelief, scrutiny, skepticism, mistrust, anger, bitterness, hurt, fear, etc. And if we’ve followed suit with the first 2 steps of walking and standing, we most certainly will begin to look at Jesus, His ways, and His people from the same perspective. And before we know it, we are sitting in a seat that doesn’t belong to us, identifying with people and narratives that we were never meant to nestle up to. Imagine the face of a scoffer, imagine their eyes… imagine how different the look and feel than someone who knows they are sitting in the seat of the Blessed. Of the Beloved. You can physically feel the difference if I said “show me a scoffer’s face” then “show me a Beloved’s face”. The seat of the Blessed is a seat of confidence. It’s a seat of comfort. It’s a seat of grace and intention. 

As we read “blessed is the man…” , what is your first thought of what is meant by the Psalm-writer? What is your idea of blessing? Safety? Preserved? The ‘Withness’ of God? Take some time to journal your thoughts here and ask Holy Spirit to reveal His heart for you in this blessing.

Can you see how this process played out at some point in your own life? Or have you watched loved ones follow this trajectory? What thoughts/emotions arise when you reflect here? If we were to stop here, what would your prayer response be? Repentant? Slightly fearful? Grateful?

VS 2

But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on His law he meditates day and night.


In direct contrast to what the Blessed (us!) avoid, verse two describes how full delight and joy is found in the law of the Lord – the Torah. The Torah refers to the first 5 books of the Bible, Genesis-Deutoronomy, which tell the story of God’s foundational work of creation, the epic downfall of man, the covenant promise of God to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and the deliverance of God’s people through Moses. These are the words the Blessed build their faith and identity on. Instead of giving ear to or patterning their lives after the wicked, the ones who focus the ears of their heart on and patterns their life according to the promises of God is blessed and never lacking. The Torah follows the grand narrative of the Gospel of Jesus in Creation, Fall, the promise of God’s rescue through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, and the final Redemption of all things when God creates new heaven and new earth. 

Instead of letting our hearts be so easily satisfied with futility, the blessed meditate day and night on the story of Jesus, on His good gospel, and we are anchored in delight! Our spirit thrives. Our affections are stirred, our soul is encouraged and comforted. We find our entirety in the nourishment of His word and we crave it more and more as truth is revealed and we grow nearer and nearer to Him.

What is your idea of meditating? Do you have an emotional/thought reaction when you imagine what it is like to meditate on the law day and night? 

VS 3

He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.

Evergreen trees

And this delight isn’t just for us to experience in isolation. Our life isn’t “just enough” for ourselves. In fact, there is life abundant! There is never a time when the Blessed isn’t producing fruit. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, getting all the refreshment and nourishment it needs, with roots that are sent deep, with a sturdy trunk and widespread branches and leaves that do not wither. Not only does it just survive every season, it prospers. It is fruitful.   Sometimes as women, we default to “survival mode” real quick. We journey from season to season, and rarely expect to thrive at all times. But an evergreen tree planted by water is lush! It is thriving. Always. In every season. Periodt.

If your first response is to argue or clap back with your list of how and why this isn’t true for you, lean into that. Dissect it. Question it. Ask the Spirit to speak clearly and reveal what is behind that reaction. Perhaps a redefining needs to take place somewhere of what “prospering” or “thriving” means to you. Reflect, pray, journal.

Jeremiah 17:7 uses the same language and says that it (the tree) doesn’t fear the heat or get anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit. Daily Grace Co.(highly recommend their Bible studies and podcast) says this: “The Blessed one is like a tree, fruit-bearing and evergreen. Every season, even the darkest, produces fruit. Even our failures are prosperity in God’s economy because He is working them for our good.”

Sit in that for a minute. “Even our failures are prosperity when God is holding them”. Reflect on how/if that affects your perspective of survival mode. 

A lyric from Kings Kaleidoscope’s “About to Break” sings –

    Funny, we forgot we swim in milk and honey

    Letting go, we’re breaking and becoming

    Leaning in and holding on, we’re falling, falling…

The first time I heard it, I was washing dishes and it literally made my hands drop and my chin lift and I said “Oh, yeah!” It was an honest to God reminder of this very Biblical principle that I had forgotten. And then, I’m going about my task with a completely renewed sense of being His Blessed. My heart turned from resentment and bitterness to just being His because the truth of His gospel grabbed my attention. Just dropping my anxious doing felt like letting go and was a small act of the breaking and becoming that I have come to crave and rejoice in. 

  • Is there anything you tend to hold onto when in “survival mode” that is keeping you from embracing the “milk and honey”? What even comes to mind when you think of what the milk and honey represents for you?
  • Sit in this for a minute: “Even our failures are prosperity when God is holding them”. Reflect on how/if that affects your perspective of survival mode. 
  • What would it look like if God’s “milk and honey” poured into your seasons of survival mode? 

Father,  we thank You for Your word that sustains, that brings delight and ever-present nourishment for our souls. We confess that often we find it simpler to take company with ideas, with beliefs, with influence that is not rooted in the truth of Your gospel. Sometimes there are patterns of comfort and desire for temporary gratification that we don’t even realize has taken space in our heart and mind. Lord, in your goodness, will you uproot anything that hinders us from meditating on Your word? Will you reveal to us the joy of Your salvation in such a deep way that our spirit craves the truth of your Word and that our food, our nourishment would be to just move and do what You’ve put into each one of us to do? May we believe that we are most fully alive and most fully human when we simply obey your Word, when we are continually restored by Your word, and when we are living out of the power of Your word. Calm our wandering, Jesus. Let our roots be so deeply secured, that our community would be drawn to rest with us and be encouraged by the refreshing waters. That we would be an evergreen people, thriving under Your care, and that as each season comes and goes, we would be consistent in delight and wisdom.