Weekly Blog

Psalm 1: A Meditation on Verse 3
Jackson Witt
May 17, 2021

After a few hectic weeks in my personal life of purchasing a home, working on said house and hosting a birthday party in just two short weeks, I needed some time away from the daily grind. And the crazy thing is that I didn’t even know I needed it. But I found myself in the midst of the perfect storm for an internal revival.

I have been doing some prep work for a Young Adult Sunday School class that is loosely based on spiritual disciplines and they just went through the practice of Meditation. And while I yearn to be able to participate in those conversations, it is refreshing to research in depth some of the practices of the early church and rediscover their value.

I also attend a small group on Monday nights with some of my dearest friends from college, in which we just began a similar series taught by Tim Mackie from Door of Hope in Portland, Oregon. And last week’s message was on the discipline of solitude.

After listening to his compelling message, I decided that I needed to work on this spiritual discipline of meditation/solitude, but I didn’t really have the motivation or time for it. Which is why I say this was the perfect storm because on Wednesday night we had our monthly night of worship and prayer which was focused on Purification and Cleansing.

Needless to say, I was convinced that if I was serious when I sang the song “Refiner” that night, I needed to rearrange a priority and begin the practice of regular meditation. And the model for that meditation is taken from the life of Jesus, who would regularly retreat from the crowds into solitude and likely meditate on the Psalms through prayer.

And so, I found myself on Thursday morning in Psalm 1.
There were three lines that struck me and so they were my emphasis for meditation and discernment:

[The one who follows God’s ways]
He will be a flourishing tree planted by God’s design,
Deeply rooted by the brooks of bliss,
Bearing fruit in every season of life.

We see several times throughout scripture this metaphor of our lives as vegetation. And often times the metaphor plays out to be the most meaningful when we talk about the process of bearing fruit and being harvested. Which is why these three lines stuck out to me.
Bearing fruit is only a result of being planted by God’s design and being deeply rooted by streams of living water. I won’t even go into the idea of bearing fruit in every season of life – even the offseason!!! – because I want to focus on the other two aspects of this metaphor.

All who “remain true to the word of ‘I AM’” will flourish and have purpose. Regardless of our occupations, we all exist in unique ways. We all have a different  social network that allows us to connect with people from different spheres. We all have different gifts and skills that allow us to reach people through varying strategies. But we are all in our unique lives for a purpose. Could you imagine if Christians across the world yielded simply a 1-to-1 ratio for the kingdom? It would take only a generation or two for our world to be radically changed. You have a purpose, and you are called to flourish where you are. And we are identified by the fruit that we produce – namely, love for our God and our neighbors.

But the surface level evaluation of a tree does not tell us the health of the tree. In fact, a tree is only as healthy as its root system. Something interesting about trees is that most of what exists above ground is the trees way of giving to its ecosystem. They provide food for animals, shade from the heat, and oxygen to breathe. With the exception of sunlight, the only way a tree absorbs nutrients to grow is through the root system.

We are called to be rooted by the stream of living water. Following Jesus so closely that we absorb the nutrients of his values, certainly. But perhaps more importantly his lifestyle. When our root system (our community, our prayer life, our worship, our intake of sound teaching) is healthy, we will not be able to help but to bear fruit - love for our enemy, acts of service, and the like.

With Love,

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1 Comment

Sharon - May 18th, 2021 at 1:55pm

Thank you for sharing your heart, Jackson