Psalm 37 lists several contrasts between the wicked and the righteous. The wicked live for themselves and abuse others to get what they want. The righteous, on the other hand, seek justice and equity in all relationships. The wicked take, the righteous give. Verse 21, puts it this way, “The wicked borrow and do not repay, but the righteous give generously…” Verse 26 says that the righteous, “are always generous and lend freely; their children will be a blessing.” The Psalm repeatedly says that the righteous will inherit the land forever while the wicked will end in destruction.

The wicked seek to fulfill their own interests at the expense of others. Therefore, their best interests are never served. The righteous seek the welfare of others, and find they have served their own best interests as well. The bluebird of happiness is the most elusive thing. If you pursue it, it always flies away. If you ignore it and do what’s right, it lands on you. Nathaniel Hawthorne said, “Happiness in this world, when it comes, comes incidentally. Make it the object of pursuit, and it leads us a wild-goose chase, and is never attained.”

William Allen White, the great journalist and philanthropist of Emporia, Kansas, demonstrated Christian insight when he gave Peter Pan Park to the city in memory of his daughter, Mary, who was killed in a horseback riding accident. When he presented the deed of the property to the mayor, he said: This is the last kick in a fistful of dollars I am getting rid of today. I have always tried to teach you that there are three kicks in every dollar—one when you make it … the second kick is when you have it … the third kick comes when you give it away.… The big kick is the last one.

“I will praise the Lord at all times. I will constantly speak his praises. I will boast only in the Lord; let all who are helpless take heart.” (Psalm 34:1-2)