Sumter Pastor Joey Durham: True praise and worship is living to please God


I want you to know how much I appreciate you spending some time today with our devotion from the Open Bible Baptist Church. It is a blessing that we do not take for granted. My devotion today is titled "The Steps of a Good Man," and my text is Psalm 37:23-24, where we read, "The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand." (KJV)

As Christians, our greatest desire should be to please our Lord and Savior. If this is truly our desire, then the life we live will be different from many in this world, and our text describes the person whose "steps" or "life" is good in the eyes of the Lord.

First, the Christian whose life pleases the Lord will find that his or her direction in life is ordered by the Lord, or in other words, God is establishing and guiding their life. It is so important for the child of God to know and to do the perfect will of God for their life. God wants His children to know His will and to do His will for their life so that they can have the joy of the Lord saturating every area of our journey. The Lord wants to guide and direct the decisions we make day by day through His Word, and as we allow Him to, He will provide clear and perfect direction concerning how to live our life. Also, the Christian who truly desires to please their Savior will actually do so.

In so doing, the heart of God will be blessed as we literally turn over the reins of our life into His capable hands. Many in religious circles today talk about "praise and worship," but true praise and worship to God is living the life that the God of Heaven has purposed for us.

Next, we find that those who choose to live their life directed by God are not immune to stumbling, but they refuse to be defeated. The Christian on the right path in life may indeed "fall" at times as we become discouraged due to the hardships, persecutions and the difficulties that life can bring anyone's way, but instead of staying down, we will get back up, dust ourselves off and keep walking faithfully with our Lord.

Finally, we see that the steps of a "good man" depend upon the strength of our Lord. To have our life upheld by our Lord's hand means that we will rely or lean upon God, rather than on our own understanding. We will daily learn and live by the truth of Proverbs 3:5-6, in which we are instructed, "Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." (KJV)

Dr. Joey Durham is pastor at Open Bible Baptist Church at 180 Old Manning Road in Sumter. You can contact Pastor Durham at or call the church office at (803) 481-9315.