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Glenn LaRue and the Legacy of Delight

In the recent past, I had the great honor of being a camp counselor for Bell Shoals Baptist Church in Brandon, Florida. This is the body of believers in which I grew up and the Lord used this church to influence my life in countless ways. It has been an amazing privilege these past two years to be able to give back to the youth group that I grew up in…to serve the youth minister who once so tirelessly served my friends and I and loved my friends and I.

The theme of camp this year was “LEGACY.” The camp verse was Psalm 145:4-5:

4One generation shall commend your works to another,
and shall declare your mighty acts.
5On the glorious splendor of your majesty,
and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.

The first evening, because of God’s sovereign plan and Satan’s clear motive in trying to disrupt that plan, the man who was supposed to be the camp speaker was unable to be there. Instead, our guest-guest speaker was Glenn LaRue. Glenn also grew up at Bell Shoals and went through Victor’s youth group. So for Victor, and many of the other adults there, it was such a delight to see someone they had once ministered too now ministering to them. As Victor said, this was his legacy, being continued on.


So Glenn preached from Psalm 1. First though, he reminded us that though there is a similarity between the words “legend” and “legacy,” there is a crucial difference in their meaning. When you think of a legend, it is often something/someone that is inflated or blown out of proportion. But even if it is true, it very much has a “then” connotation. Legends have very little effect on our lives today. But a legacy, well, a legacy was good then, but even today we are feeling its effects. Okay. So Psalm 1.

1 Blessed is the man
who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked
or stand in the way of sinners
or sit in the seat of mockers.

2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
and on his law he meditates day and night.

3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither.
Whatever he does prospers.

4 Not so the wicked!
They are like chaff
that the wind blows away.

5 Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.

6 For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.

He called this “The Legacy of Delight.” In general, we aren’t sure who wrote this Psalm. Most of the Psalms were written by David, so Glenn asked us if we thought it was weird that this random Psalm, probably not written by David, the main Psalm writer, was at the beginning of this book. He reminded us that this Psalm is telling us what the entire book of Psalms is to be about. Look back in verse 1. It begins with “blessed.” This is the first word of the first Psalm of the biggest book of the bible. And it simply means happy. It could say “Happy is the man….” But this is an eternal, lasting, and permanent happiness. Not simply a happiness based on your current state of being.

Then, we got a poetry lesson. A Hebrew poetry lesson to be exact. He said that Hebrew poetry isn’t about rhyming, but instead, it’s about setting up thoughts and parallelism. It is also very highly structured. The first word in the Psalm is “blessed” and the last work in the Psalm is “perish.” This is the frame for what the whole Psalm is about. You have two choices here. Be blessed/happy or be perishing/unhappy.

Then, we had a drawing lesson! (Seriously though, it was good. These kids needed to be shown how to interact with God's word. That though the words are Holy because they are from God, the paper itself isn't.) He told us to put a big bracket around verses 1-2 and write in the margin “TWO WAYS.” Put another big bracket around verses 3-5 and write “TWO RESULTS.” Put one last bracket around verse 6 and write “THE REASON.”

Okay. Two ways. The first way is man’s way.

walk in the counsel of the wicked
or stand in the way of sinners
or sit in the seat of mockers.

In my opinion, this was one of my favorite parts of the whole sermon. (The other funny part was this story about Lake Swan and Glenn and Patrick and a giant mudpit. But if you don't know Glenn or Patrick it's not so funny...and you need Glenn to tell it for it to be funny, so I'll just stick with attemping to type my notes.) Glenn said that growing up, his family had always had this verse hung on the wall and he had read it countless times, as many of us probably have. But that he never noticed there was progression here. You begin by walking with the wicked, just kind of chilling out and listening to what they have to say. You progress to participating with sinners. You end with a hardened heart…a mocker’s heart. How obvious once he said it, but I also had never seen the progression before laid out in that Psalm like that.

The second way is God’s way.

Delight in the law of the Lord

Here, delight isn’t just a thinking word. It’s an emotional word. It’s a grounded emotion. It is standing on the law of the Lord. The Law of the Lord is the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation…ALL OF IT. The Law is a means to an end, and the end is the Lord.

Then, there are two results based on your choice of ways. The first is blessing.

He is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither.
Whatever he does prospers

The second is to be wicked.

Not so the wicked!
They are like chaff
that the wind blows away.

So chaff. Be real. That's in the bible tons of times. Do you know what it REALLY is? Other than something to do with wheat? Well, chaff is something that comes from harvesting wheat or grain. Once the dry stalk is cut down, they take a winnowing fork and scoop the wheat up into the air and all the dry crusty stuff flies up into the air and blows away and the wheat, the good stuff, falls right back down.

So choose your way, there will be a result, but most importantly there is a reason for that result.

For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.

The God over all is watching over him, he who is blessed.

Psalm 1. A Psalm that speaks of the only two ways for us to walk-in blessing or in wickedness. Towards the end, Glenn was crunched for time but the kids got it. It's black and white. 2 "choices" if you will. My prayer would be that they would look at this Legacy of Delighting in the Lord, and meditate on how to delight in the Lord. From there, their world will be knocked upside as the Spirit reveals to them just how delightful it is to delight in the Lord and His ways.


*Usually, when I type notes, they are from a sermon on tape, one I can listen to over and over until I know that I get what is being communicated. This obviously, wasn't on tape and my apologies if I misquoted or misunderstood anything that was being said."

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