What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may see good? ~Psalm 34:12
As they get older, people will sometimes tell their family and friends, “I’ve lived a good life.” However, by what means are we qualifying a good life? Is it our comfort level? Is it our success? Is it our career achievements? Is it our travels? David gives us the biblical perspective on what constitutes “the good life.” Everyone wants a good life, and Psalm 34 tells us how it is attained.
We see the restraint.
“Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile.” The hardest thing for many of us to do is restrain ourselves from being critical, judgmental, and opinionated. Add to this other sins of speech including gossiping, slander, swearing, and deceitfulness, and we can find ourselves alienating friends, making enemies, and blowing little things out of proportion. Let us be reminded that the tongue is a world of iniquity and is set on fire of hell. Let us be swift to hear and slow to speak!
We see the refusal.
“Depart from evil.” The good life is attainable when we determine to forsake all evil. We must view all sin as dishonoring to God and defiling of our character. Psalm 1:1 gives us the best counsel by teaching us that we are most happy when do not walk in the counsel of the ungodly, do not stand in the way of sinners, and do not sit in the seat of the scornful. Departing from evil implies we are to walk away from evil. There are times when we must flee evil. In all situations, we are to withdraw ourselves from all appearance of evil.
We see the repentance.
“The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.” The good life is attainable when we humble ourselves, confess all known sin, and maintain a contrite spirit before God. Contriteness helps us to avoid a hardened heart to sin and holiness. A soft heart keeps us in close communication with the Lord. A repentant heart is a must for answered prayers and a powerful prayer life.
We see the reconciling.
“Seek peace, and pursue it.” Our Lord calls us to be peacemakers. “Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.” David sought for peace with Saul, even though Saul refused to accept him. We are never guaranteed that those we seek peace with will reconcile with us. However, we are commanded to do our best to pursue peace with everyone, even when what we do feels futile and humiliating. A distinguishing attribute of a child of God is that we seek for peace.
We see the righteousness.
“Do good.” God ingrained within all of us a sense of doing good. Several times in Titus 3, Paul emphasizes the importance of doing good. We are to maintain good works. We are to have a good witness. We are to do God’s will. Doing good also means maintaining the best practices of a fellowship with the Lord. Foremost in this is a focus on praying without ceasing. “The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry.” God wants us to pray about everything. When we are selective in our praying, God will send us difficulties and trials to move us to pray and lean upon him. Peter described the ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ as He Who went about doing good.
We see the result. The result is loving life, long life, and the good life. The principles David gives us are so important that Peter reiterates the same in 1 Peter 3:10-13. Do you want the good life? It’s yours if you follow these principles.
Have an inspired God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: 1 Corinthians 12-14