Read: Psalm 15

O Lord, who may abide in Your tent? Who may dwell on Your holy hill? Those who walk blamelessly, and do what is right. Psalm 15:1 & 2a

We all have an image in mind of the good life. It is different for each of us, of course, but the pursuit of that life is quite similar. We have an image of what a pleasant, peaceful, stress-free life would look like for us. The picture often includes more money and fewer financial pressures, more time playing and less time in the office, more free time and fewer standing obligations. Our image of the good life is something like an idealized heaven on earth that we strive for with every ounce of our being and yet never fully attain.

The psalmist assumes that a good life is rewarded by an experience of an eternally good life with God. “O Lord, who may abide in your tent?” The answer? Those who walk blamelessly. Those who speak truthfully. Those who do not slander with their tongue. Those who stand by their oath even when it is inconvenient to do so. God does not call us to a life full of pleasure; the Lord encourages us to take a longer view—to live in faithful ways today so that we may dwell in paradise with God forever.

What is the difference between enjoying the good life and living a good life?

Lord, I am often obsessed with living well now. I want the trappings of paradise today. And yet, I never quite get there. Help me to focus on living a good life every single day, rather than striving for some idyllic existence that can only be had with You. In Jesus’ name, I pray. AMEN.