For surely, O LORD, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favour as with a shield.
David was sure of one thing: God blesses the righteous. We need to be no less sure. Today many sources to which we looked for security and certainty have failed us. Trusted political and ﬁnancial institutions are crumbling around us. But there is one thing in life that is still sure: God blesses the righteous. This simple, unchanging fact has important practical implications for the way we live.
On the one hand, we need to devote less time and effort to making provision for material security. On the other hand, we need to be more concerned about making sure our lives are right before God; that we qualify for that blessing of the Lord which He reserves for the righteous—and only for the righteous.
The blessing of the Lord also brings His protection with it. David says, “You surround them [the righteous] with your favour as with a shield.” God’s favour is toward the righteous. When we cultivate His righteousness, then His favour encircles us like a shield on all sides.
It shields us against the blows and the pressures of life. It comes between us and the forces of evil that seek to destroy us— forces too powerful and cunning for us to deal with in our own strength or wisdom. We have no protection against these forces except the invisible but also invincible shield that is the Lord’s favour.
In the light of these unchanging laws that govern our lives, we need to re-examine our priorities. Righteousness pays better—and more enduring—dividends than cleverness or expediency or self-interest. “But seek ﬁrst his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:33).
Help me, Lord, to be more concerned about righteousness than about success or expediency.
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The Psalms supply encouragement, inspiration, correction, inner strength and vision. These short meditations on the Psalms help get your day off to a good start!