A Powerful Life Lesson from Psalm 37

Discover how this psalm can help you align your life with God's plan and live joyfully.

By Elizabeth Peale Allen, Pawling, New York

Psalm 37 is a powerful and practical manual for life. Within its first eight verses are rich insights for finding joy and ridding yourself of negative thinking.

Do not fret because of evil men or be envious of those who do wrong;
for like the grass they will soon wither, like green plants they will soon die away.

Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this:
He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the
         noonday sun.
Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when men succeed in
       their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.

Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret–it leads only to evil. –Psalm 37:1-8

Featured Product

The Daily Life Bible

The Daily Life Bible

This precise, faithful new translation is made easier to read and easier to understand.

This Psalm gives us “do-not” commands, behaviors we must leave behind to find God’s blessing and peace. Do not worry or be envious (verse 1). Let each day find you grateful for what God has given you. Do not be an angry, vindictive individual (verse 8). Forgive as you have been forgiven; practice gentleness and self-control.

But this Psalm also gives us positive actions we need to take to bring us into alignment with God’s plan for living joyfully.

1. Trust in the Lord (verse 3).
Whatever bothers you, trust God to be able to handle it better than you can.

2. Do good (verse 3).
Life is about choices. Know that God will honor you when you do the right thing.

3. Delight yourself in the Lord (verse 4).
Fall in love with Jesus. Take time every day to sit quietly in his presence. Learn to delight in him.

4. Commit your way to the Lord (verse 5).
Trust all you do, every day, all your life, to God; he is able to handle it best.

5. Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him (verse 7).
This does not mean to do nothing. Rather, it means that after you have done all you can, you should relax in the knowledge that God will take care of the rest.

We live in a world where advice blares from television and talk radio, streams from blogging sites; where friends and sometimes even strangers are eager to offer opinions about your life. So it’s good to know that the Bible is still relevant. Reliable. And oh so true!