"Psalm 1 - A Rooted Life" - April 27, 2014

chapter 1 says blessed 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

but his delight is in the law of the

Lord and on his law he meditates day and

night 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 not so the

wicked they are like the chaff that the

wind blows away and therefore the wicked

will not stand in the judgment nor

sinners in the Assembly of the righteous

for the Lord watches over the way of the

righteous but the way of the wicked will

perish father I thank you so much for

the images that you give us in this

solemn and for what you would speak to

us today lord I pray it would be the

Shepherd's voice speaking to us God into

our hearts not just our minds Lord we

open ourselves to you what would you

speak to us today and God let it be your

word let it be life-giving word as this

psalm promises us your word is in Jesus

name Amen blessed is the man or woman

who does not walk in the counsel of the

wicked or stand in the way of sinners or

sit in the seat of mockers but his

delight is in the law of the Lord and on

his law he meditates day and night you'd

be like a tree planted by streams of

water who bears his fruit in season

whose leaf does not wither everything he

does prospers what a beautiful promise

no we see here in this Psalm described

two different types of life two

different ways of living two approaches

to things and there's a contrast here

and i think i'm especially drawn to this

song because i feel like as a pastor I

have a privilege of observe

what God does in people's lives it's

really selfish in a lot of ways I get a

front-row seat when I'm doing a wedding

I get the best seat in the house I get

run right there right I get to see them

both right they're making their promises

I feel like as a as a minister I have

access into the intimacy of what God

does in people's lives in a special way

I get to witness what God does it's very

important I I try to remember as a

pastor I am NOT a psychologist even

though i might play one in the movies I

I don't do it very well so I've learned

not to try to do that I've learned i'm

certainly not a CEO no I Drive a

business right into the ground no it's

although there's leadership involved I'm

a witness to what God's doing witness to

what the Good Shepherd is doing in

people's lives and I feel like I see

people live things that are so hard

sometimes the pain they go through the

suffering they go through the problems

they face and I see how they come

through those situations and experience

the vitality of God and they don't just

survive they thrive and it never ceases

to amaze me you know sometimes it would

say in the Bible that Jesus when people

would come up and they would have faith

in him that Jesus was amazed by their

faith well you know I'm still surprised

on a weekly basis by what God does in

people's lives and how people can move

forward from things and thrive even in

the darkest most dry times just this

week and I could share this very freely

there's a woman in the church who who's

been married air her husband is very ill

and was in the hospital all week he went

in on Easter Sunday and they've been

married for well over 50 years they have

seven kids they've been in ministry

together and he's extremely ill and even

in the sadness I could see in her face

and and the the tiredness that comes

from grief I could just feel a vitality

coming out of her and she would talk to

me for hours about all that God has done

in their lives over the years and how

he's faithful even now and I'm sitting

listening and I'm thinking blessed are

the ears that hear what I hear blessed

are the eyes that see what I see how was

she doing this well someone tells us how

she's like a tree planted by streams of

water who roots whose roots go down into

good soil that is watered by a constant

running river and even during times of

drought when there's no rain that River

continues to flow and her leaf is green

and I look at I think how did this

happen God how can her leave bezel how

can she have this vitality even and this

is mysterious but even joy in the midst

of grief and sadness now don't get me

wrong I'm not one of those people who

believes that we don't worry be happy we

have to pretend even when we're in pain

that we're not in pain I I don't I think

we can be honest if something hurts

there's nothing wrong with saying ouch

right you read that in the Psalms

they're called lament songs but even in

the midst of that sadness there's this

there's this hope there's this vitality

because there is the awareness that she

does not walk alone that the Lord

watches over the way of the righteous

but the way of the wicked will perish

you know that last verse verse 6 the

Lord watches over the way of the

righteous you know there's an

interesting word in Hebrew use for that

it's the word to know says the Lord

knows the way of the righteous and it's

not just that he knows about their way

in their lifestyle but he knows

intimately what they're going through

it's the same word used for knowing a

husband knowing a wife there's intimacy

there's relationship that the righteous

person who does what this psalm says God

is intimately involved in the day to day

of their life they don't walk alone

there are people I know who really

should be dead many times over we may

have a person or two here like that is

like how you have no idea I could write

a book right but I I could think of a

couple dear friends who really you know

I i had that eulogy written and i was

hombre de poca fake estoy a man of

little faith i was they were not only

are they still with us but they are

thriving and there is one reason for

that because there are people who had

the Word of God in them and that word of

God had a vitality and an energy that it

just it gave them superhuman it gave him

nine lives superhuman strength I know

people who have been through hard times

because of poor decisions they've made

anyone here ever made a less than wise

decision anyone here ever had to live

with the consequences of a less than

wise decision and you think how in the

world are they going to come back from

this how in the world of I gotta I

there's a saying it's finished madera la

papa I wanna see mithila baptized I put

my paw in I really stepped in it you

know it's the implication oh my gosh

people whose lives have been over DOA

dead on arrival it's gone who are now

people who stand at the altar and raise

their hands and worship God and serve

and teach the Word of God to others how

did they do it the Word of God was in

them they're a tree planted by streams

of water I've seen it over and over

again families that should have been

disintegrated an awfully long time ago

they can resurrect and restore and be

healed and rediscover love I've seen it

too many times to give up on anyone or

anything our God is able our God is


he is powerful and this is the psalm

that talks about it one of the many and

so I want to go through this and it

contrasts two different ways of life

because not everybody lives that kind of

resilient vitality there is also a type

of life that disintegrates and decays

emotionally spiritually and even spreads

that decay to other you other people you

put an apple that's rotten in with a

bunch of other apples and what happens

the rot is contagious the other day

hence the saying bad apple right here

and we see that here blessed is the man

or woman who does not walk in the

counsel of the wicked or stand in the

way of sinners or sit in the seat of

mockers we see here the negative

degenerating influence of people who

allow themselves to be influenced by the

world around them and by the wrong

people anyone ever hear ever had a

friend that maybe wasn't wasn't good for

you maybe some friends that we need to

say I love you from far away maybe no

unless you're married to that friend

then you stay in there and it's going to

be all right we'll work it out but

there's influence and it's a

degenerating influence we see here that

it says it starts with the person

walking the person who does not walk in

the counsel of the wicked so at first

the person is walking or stand in the

way of sinners so the first they're

walking then they're standing or sit in

the seat of mockers so it goes from

walking to standing to sitting okay so

the person is becoming increasingly

settled in who they are and we know it's

not a good thing that becoming

degenerating losing our character is a

process things don't unravel overnight

we make decisions it starts by listening

to the long

voices to the wrong council then it

transitions into standing and conversing

with the wrong people in the wrong ways

and then it ends up with us sitting in a

seat that has our name on it that's made

for us I use it when I was talking with

the youth the young adults about this

solemn use the image of is a big

difference between walking down a street

where you might hear certain comments

and hanging out on a street corner

that's different right that's when

you're standing in the way of sinners

you're hanging out on a certain street

corner to actually sitting on a

particular stoop that's your spot and

that's your there's a difference it's a

progression of rootedness in that place

right now don't get me wrong as

Christians I believe we are to be

present in the world and in the city

where did Jesus spend his time Jesus

went and hung out with tax collectors

and prostitutes and he scandalized the

religious people of his time didn't he

so he didn't say well I'm sorry I'm too

holy to go there and talk to that person

okay no he went and was among people and

he was a friend of sinners but the

sinners changed and became like him he

didn't change and become like them a men

I've heard the image like this I'm

totally stealing this you know if you or

say if I'm standing up here and I'm not

gonna do this because Sam will actually

do it to me but we hold and I say i'm

going to try to pull Sam up here onto

the platform just with one hand it's

gonna try to pull him all the way up and

I try and try and try it's going to be

hard to pull him all the way up I think

I could pull it off but it would be a

lot of work how easy would it be for him

to just give a tug and pull me down

though right I think we need to evaluate

the influence that others have on us

there have been interesting sociological

studies on just how profoundly if we're

not careful the people around us can be

contagious and rub off on us it happens

in friendships it happens in homes it

happens in

I ADIZ they've studied even social

movements that happened mysteriously

there's a phrase non-biological spread

of illness illnesses that are contagious

just because you're around people who

have them even without it being

biological I don't get that it's

mysterious but then they call them

cascades that are negative sometimes

whether it be crime or violence or

suicide or depression or different types

of ailments negative cascades the

different kinds of influence and what

they've discovered is if we don't just

influence one person but when you

influence one person they influence the

people around them so I come home grumpy

from work one day and I slime my bad

mood on my wife and kids right while

those kids are going to go and slime

their little friends in school and their

teachers and then those little friends

with slime on them are going to go home

and slime their parents with a bad mood

and then those parents are going to do

what well they're going to bring it to

work and they're going to get this all

over their co-workers and then the next

thing you know those coworkers are

bringing it home to their kids and

there's these negative spirals and

societies as a whole can spin downward

and so there's this influence that

people have and it starts with the

voices we listen to blessed is the man

who does not walk in the counsel of the

wicked walk is used to refer to your

lifestyle a person whose life is being

influenced by listening to the wrong

advice you ever have someone give you

bad advice here's one story young boy 17

years old has an interest in two young

ladies and goes to Papa and says hey dad

there's two girls that I'm interested in

what do I do now he could give good

advice or he could say aren't you a man

date both of them bad advice bad advice

what voices are we listening to in the

book of Proverbs

there were two different ladies while

we're talking about ladies two different

ladies lady wisdom and Lady folly lady

wisdom crying out on the streets God's

wisdom calling out and saying come to me

and listen to me and your life will be

blessed the fear of the Lord is the

beginning of wisdom but there's another

voice crying out beckoning people to cut

corners and to live in different ways

there's two voices that are echoing

throughout society and we have a choice

to make who and what will I listen to

what voice will I allow to resonate in

my mind and head and i would say that

every one of us at some point sympathize

you hear the Rolling Stones song

sympathy for the devil right now I hope

you haven't heard that song delete it

from your all of us sympathize with what

the devil says at some point like Eve

did well you know he's got a point that

tree looks kind of nice what's wrong

with being wise and you start dialoguing

sympathy for ungodly thoughts that begin

to echo in I think well maybe maybe

God's Way isn't the best way and we

start listening to that and listening to

those negative influences we need to

decide and realize that there is a lying

voice that is always there and if we

choose to listen to it it will gained

credence in our mind to the point where

it becomes not just something we heard

but something we believe the Bible calls

that a stronghold it's an attitude that

we cultivate based on a lie take this

one you know what I'm just a person with

bad luck things don't go well for me not

lovable it's just not things are things

are going to go bad so I you know may as

well just it's a lie it becomes a

thought that Satan shoots at the mind

then a person starts believing it and

living according to it and the next

thing they know they're trapped in

negative cycles based on those lies and

that's where as Christians we need to

listen to a different voice

the Bible says he is not like that the

blessed person the blessed person has a

delight in the law of the Lord I love in

the spanish they say a su delicia what

is it what is how do they say it yeah

sino que la ley de he ova esta su

delicia you don't have to know spanish

to know what the word delicia means do

you there's a saver in the Word of God

now some of you might not feel that you

might think well I read the Bible and

it's just kind of I don't really get it

it's an acquired taste but I promise you

once you begin to get that taste for the

word of God once you begin to start

savoring what's written it begins to get

addictive it's it's a good addiction you

begin to crave that word more and more

and it becomes the proverb that says it

becomes sweet to your soul it becomes

delicious to you now that doesn't happen

anyone know how do you acquire an

acquired taste right right my wife loves

these these sort of sour plums from

japan called umeboshi it is a very

acquired taste i have not yet acquired

it right I have acquired a taste for for

a good sushi and good you know wasabi

now I can't get enough of it you know

you acquire it you don't like it at

first you need to eat it until you like

it and it's like that with the word of

God we need to meditate on the Word of

God to acquire that delicia and part of

it is because we don't believe that the

Word of God or the law of the lord is

just a book it's not just a book

remember when I first finished reading

the Bible for the first time I think I

was idolized 1819 I've been a Christian

for a couple years I finished it and my

father asked me okay what are you going

to read next I thought well I guess I'll

guess I'll go back and read it again

he's like again

it's like watching a movie you know how

it ends you know it's are we going to

move on you know it's a lot of other

books no I think I'll keep well well how

about when you've read it a second time

what then well maybe I'll actually go to

school and read it in the original

language okay what after why would

someone want to read the Bible every day

all their lives doesn't it ever get old

do you have any people here who've read

the Bible for many many years who've

acquired that taste and tell you it

doesn't get old it's new every day in

the Bible it says man or woman does not

live by bread alone but by what every

word that cut proceeds from the mouth of

God and that was spoken to a people who

were living every day they were

sustaining themselves on a bread that

was given every morning anyone know what

that bread was called manna they were in

the desert the people of Israel they

just been delivered from slavery they're

wandering around the desert and every

morning they would wake up and they

would see that the the do become like

white flakes and and they would gather

it up and and they they said they asked

the question what is it which in Hebrew

is mana and so they named it that they

named it what is it and there was one

crazy guy who said well I don't know

what it is but I'm gonna try eating it

because I'm really hungry there's one in

every group praise the Lord he ate it

and he's like does it you know it's it's

okay it needs a little you know Sagwa

naho you know son cool you know sancocho

low it needs a little bit of seasoning

here and maybe some garlic and salt but

we can live with this we can live with

this and they lived on this bread every

day but you know what would happen if

they tried to collect the bread and save

it for the next day and we know what

would happen it would go rotten they had

to gather fresh bread every day except

the day before the Sabbath that's when

they could save it so not working on the

side but they could they could save it

for that day so the message i believe is

that god has a word for

every day there is bread waiting in the

Bible for us to gather and eat every

single day if I try to live on

yesterday's bread it's getting rotten

already God has something to say to me

today yes I want to remember what he

said to me yesterday keep a journal

that's great but god has something and

it's because we don't believe that the

Bible is just a book we believe it is a

voice we believe there is a shepherd who

speaks the Bible talks about the voice

of the shepherd and how the Sheep

recognized the voice of the shepherd God

is speaking to us through these words

and so we read the Bible and it's not

enough just to read it I want to hear

the voice of the shepherd as I gather

this bread for the day what does God

what do you have to say to me today and

I want to hear from him I don't want to

listen to other voices but it's one

thing to say no I'm not going to listen

I'm not going to listen it's another

thing to say yes what will I listen to

it's easier to say no if I've got a

bigger yes right you've heard that

phrase if I'm listening to God then it's

less likely i'm going to listen to other

voices that will fill that vacuum and

then it says that the person who begins

by listening to the wrong voices end up

standing in the way of sinners they're

not just walking by they stop in the

intern to doc dialogue and they start

interacting and they start letting the

ideas begin to permeate their heart well

God says were to do that with the word

of the Lord by meditating on it on his

law he meditates day and night we read

that same phrase in the book of Joshua

where he's just about to be the leader

replacing Moses himself can you believe

it how would you feel if you were

replacing Moses okay Moses dead now

you're in charge what god says don't

worry about it do not let this book of

the law depart from your mouth meditate

on it day and night so that you will be

prosperous and successful do not be

afraid do not be discouraged for the

Lord your God will be with you wherever

you go if

you meditate on the word you're going to

have a strength and a wisdom that will

help you to do what you need to do now

what does that mean in the key brew the

word used here is the word haha it means

literally to murmur or to mumble okay do

you have any people here who talk to

themselves no no one wants to admit it

but you do some of you do you know you

do some of you sing to yourselves you

talk to yourself I talked to myself all

the time you do okay you admit it praise

the Lord sometimes I have a my wife if

she knows I'm in a certain place she

will hide and listen to hear what I'm

saying and then I see a what were you

doing you're eavesdropping on my

conversation with myself we talking and

muttering there's that muttering that

internal conversation well that word is

used for meditation now that's important

because I think especially in our

society when you think of meditating

what's the image that comes to mind for

you right it's usually the image of the

the Hindu or the Buddhist the you know

sitting there repeating a mantra

emptying their mind and allowing kind of

blanking the mind and they've done

studies that it'sit's really big in

Western society to and people try to

divorce it from its spiritual roots

because there's physiological benefits

and whatnot but the whole idea of that

type of meditation is to blank the mind

to empty the mind Hebrew judeo-christian

meditation has exactly the opposite goal

instead of blanking and emptying the

mind and heart you're looking to fill

your mind and heart with the word of God

okay so it's similar in some way so that

it involves being quiet for a little

while settling yourself putting the

phone away no texting no emails no it

means being still letting your heart

settle a little bit quieting the noise

that's constantly cluttering our mind

it's it's good it's good for us I need

to do this a little more and then taking

a verse and

begin to chew on it begin to just Mull

it over and you could hear why they

would use the word mutter because you're

memorizing it let's say let's say I'm

meditating on this very psalm you know

his delight is on the law of the Lord

and on his law he meditates day and

night I'm repeating it I'm memorizing

his delight is in the lawful or and then

as I'm repeating it and I'm memorizing

and I'm not going to think about

anything else 45 minutes just this verse

try that you ever tried to think about

one thing for five minutes what happens

no the minute you try to think about

that one thing you're gonna remember ten

things you you gotta do right oh I gotta

do that like yeah oh this you know what

Dietrich Bonhoeffer suggested that he

there's a great chapter on meditation in

a book i think it's called life together

when he talks about he says how about no

pad of paper and you have a verse that

you're meditating on that you're

repeating and then as you think of

things well if it's important just jot

it down give it to the Lord and then

return to your verse you know and just

say okay that's okay I'm not going to

let these thoughts be like oh no there I

go again my thoughts are wandering no

I'm going to take more or let's say you

find yourself thinking about a person

well pray for that person write down

their name and then return to your verse

so the those thoughts that come through

kind of make friends with them put them

there before the Lord and then your

bacteria but you repeat it over and over

again and as you do the verse should

begin to change before your eyes you

know you ever seen those weird magic I

things you know those those paintings

that were really big in the 90s where

there'd be a lot of dots and you stare

at it for long enough and something

comes out at you you know a dinosaur

that and then you see I see it you know

you know those things well meditation is

a little like that you're meditating on

a verse until suddenly something jumps

out at you from it what happens is the

verse goes the word goes from here down

to here it's not just words that you're

mulling over but it becomes a voice

that's being spoken to you that you know

the Lord is my shepherd I shall not want

you repeat it over the Lord is my

shepherd i sharma and then suddenly you

start hearing a voice telling you Greg

I'm your Shepherd you're my sheep you're

not going to lack anything as long as

I'm with you and then wait who said that

but Oh God said that but wait a minute

that's written here but wait a minute

God is speaking the verse to me do you

get it god you're my shepherd I won't

lack anything and then and then you pray

it back to him he said god I thank you

that you're my shepherd you're not just

any Shepherd you're my shepherd even in

the midst of this well even though I

walk through the valley of the shadow of

death you are with me oh God thank you

cuz I'm in a valley right now and I

can't see where I'm going but I know

you're with me I will not fear but god I

can't see you I need to feel your rod

and your staff god I need to feel that

right now do you hear what I'm doing I'm

praying the somme I'm taking what I'm

reading and I'm turning it into

conversation with God I'll never forget

in discipleship level one in and I'll

try to translate this one one of the

people when we're studying meditation

said when I meditate may they hold Javad

I put it aside mole I let the psalm take

me away like it's a boat that I get into

and I just sail away in it or Joe a go

inside mo meal I make it my own it

becomes mine and you know when you've

really meditate on something because

usually and again I you know everyone's

going to experience emotions in

different ways but for me there's

usually tears involved usually it's like

wow god you're talking to me if anyone

here has ever tried to go to bible

school or seminary you can know that

that could sometimes be a very dry time

no yeah when I went to seminary I'm

studying the Bible right full time hey

it's good to be a bible study 24-7 is

going to be great but what happens to

seminarians sometimes is they find

themselves feeling spiritually dry and

they're like what's going on God

where are you and I believe it's because

sometimes they're used to meditating on

the Word and then we start studying it

and we forget to meditate on it so the

word we get into the word but does the

word get in you right letting met it

going deep when we're meditating and

don't get me wrong I love seminary and

it's and I use it to meditate a lot of

the education but as you're meditating

you're you're putting roots down and

deep into the dirt so that you're

tapping into a river that's available to

you you can start this today you can

start this right now it's as close as

this know if you have one of these fancy

magic phones which I waited as long as

humanly possible to not get you get a

Bible app and you've got every

translation known to man available to

you at the tip of your fingers just

bring it up bring up a verse wherever

you are meditate on it repeat it over

and over get quiet with the Lord let God

speak to you and amazing things will

begin to happen God will speak there's a

voice that will come to us now it says

that the person who is the the negative

example we see at the beginning the

person who stands in the way of sinners

and ends up sitting in the seat of

mockers ah I don't know exactly what a

seed of mockers is okay I tried to

figure this out but mocking is used in

the book of Proverbs for scoffing at

things of God scoffing at Authority

making jokes about things that are holy

thing up those people they don't SI hint

did those people they don't understand

there's a sense of arrogance and

superiority I have found that especially

in modern day in our educational system

if we're not careful along with

education people can become cynical and

scoffing towards others there can be an

arrogance a looking down on simple

minded people who still believe in God

and still believe in right and wrong

have you observed that as opposed to

becoming increasingly humble and

and kind and childlike Jesus says the

wisdom that comes from above is first of

all pure peaceable loving child like not

arrogant the seed of scoffers now this

guy this person has gone from walking to

standing to there's a seat with his name

on it it's the scoffer seat and he's

going to sit there and scoff at everyone

I'm better I'm better now there's a

feeling of being settled and being

rooted and immovable even and I thought

of sharing this with you it's as kind of

relates to the the message when we

talked about supernatural mentality but

pasado Bertil when we were just moving

into this building he had a vision sort

of a dream vision of this this building

this space and he was down in the

basement only back then it was not

finished there was a lot of raw material

still but he was in the basement and

suddenly in this basement it was it was

dark it was dungeon like suddenly he

started seeing like sort of people

figures walking around if there's

children I'm not trying to freak anyone

out okay I don't want anyone have

nightmares but he started seeing like

like figures moving towards him he saw

someone walking in different ways and

then he saw someone coming right towards

him and he's like I got to get out of

the way and the person walked right

through him and he turns around he saw

the person from behind right so this is

like a science fiction movie right and

then it became a multitude of people

coming and going it was like it was a

crosswalk like a place where there were

just multitudes coming and going and

passing and walking and they walked

right through him and right through

walls as if the physical space weren't

even real remember how we talked about

the supernatural mentality that there is

an invisible dimension all around us the

heavenly dimension well that's what he

was seeing right and then in the midst

of this sort of vision he had he

realized he was seeing the spiritual

reality around him he saw a chair and

there was a person sort of a grotesque

figure of a person sitting in the chair

was who was morbidly obese who who who

had this sneering kind of attitude and

was just sitting in that chair immovable

the definition of couch potato okay but

very dehumanized and immovable like not

going to go anywhere and and I believe

that's that was the end of the vision I

don't know if there was more to it if

you remember I will have him flesh it

out there's probably more to it but when

he fell God was showing him with some of

the spiritual principalities in this

area trying to to have people Lou become

depressed and and just the darkness and

the heaviness and the person who was

sitting would not move they would not

budge they were sitting in the seat of

mockers when people have allowed lies to

so permeate their way of thinking there

comes a point where they're calcified in

that it's like they won't budge and

there's an to become increasingly firm

and stubborn in it now the contrast to

that is the person who meditates on the

word of God who also becomes

increasingly firm and immovable as a

tree planted by streams of water you try

to push over an oak tree and good luck

you're not going to do it right a tree

is solid it's firm it's not going

anywhere but it's not dead and it's not

stuck it's alive even though that tree

is firm there's a vitality flowing

through it and it's never the same tree

from day to day it's growing it's

changing its leaves are green there's

fresh fruit the tree is by streams of

living water that is constantly changing

not stagnant waters that become rotten

and putrid and so the contrast between

the person who allows themself to become

stuck in their sin and the person who is

so rooted in God that they're

increasingly vital and alive and

flourishing I love seeing people become

trees like this no in the Book of Isaiah

61 Jesus says the Spirit of the Lord is

upon me because the Lord has anointed me

to preach good news to the poor he sent

me to bind up the brokenhearted to

proclaim freedom for the captives and

release from darkness for the prisoners

to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor

and the day of vengeance of our God to

comfort all who mourn and provide for

those who grieve in Zion and to bestow

on them a crown of beauty instead of

Ashes the oil of gladness instead of

mourning and a garment of praise instead

of a spirit of despair they will be

called Oaks of righteousness a planting

of the Lord for the display of his

splendor people whose lives were broken

who were hurting who fell all dried up

in lifeless I begin to discover that

they can put their roots into the soil

of the word of God and begin to flourish

and become an oak of righteousness

that's what we're about in believing the

gospel that's what we're about as men

and women of God and that's why we know

that this works now the wicked and it

says the wicked are like chaff that the

wind blows away but the people who are

rooted in the Word of God are constantly

bearing fruit and its fruit that lasts

now the beauty of a tree that's bearing

fruit is that does a tree need to try to

bear fruit no just fruit is fruit

something you manufacture like in a

factory got to work really hard at

making fruit no it's organic the tree

just needs to be rooted on healthy soil

and the fruit will come in its season

it's not going to happen overnight if we

are in a hurry for things to change

right now we're not seeing things

through God's eyes no some people say we

got to speed this up people have got to

change more quickly right do you ever

think that about a person you know who's

like why isn't she changing more quickly

why is he still like this well things

take time last I checked pregnancy takes

nine months

for all our advanced science there's no

speeding it up no even though some

people would like that no but no it's

going to take time life and growth is

going to take time fruit will be born in

season there may be dark dry times where

there's no rain and where our branches

seem barren and we say God I don't see

how things are ever going to change

that's where we need to have the faith

to know if I root it on good soil if I'm

meditating on the Word of God if I'm

plugging into God change will come I

will survive this there will be fruit

here again and it'll be the way jesus

said if I remain in you and my words

remain in you you will bear fruit fruit

that will last not stuff you don't we

shouldn't want as a church things to

just be flashy and quick and yeah all

things are going to be exciting that

although I want God to move I want

fireworks but I want fruit that's going

to last we don't want we don't want foam

and fizzle right what that depth want

those roots to go down so that the fruit

that's being born is healthy fruit might

not taste as good as Cracker Jacks at

first but it's good for you it gives you

energy that's going to last that's going

to make a difference it takes time it

takes time it takes making decisions

today saying even though I don't feel

like it I'm going to come to church and

route myself in the Word of God i'm

going to associate with people who who

draw me into God's presence i'm going to

meditate on this word and i know that in

time I will bear fruit and leaf does not

wither you know that's where again I

come back where I started there are

people I know who've been through so

much and yet they're shining their

shining with God's glory their leaf is

still green after all these years after

all these mistakes after all these blows

that life has dealt them there is a life

shining out of them the leaf does not


I want to be that kind of person in the

Bible it talks about Caleb and Joshua

who were elderly men who said I'm as

vigorous as I was when I was nineteen

let me Adam that's the kind of people we

want to be there is a life that flows

into us and it's all in perspective when

it talks about how the wicked will not

stand in the judgment nor sinners in the

Assembly of the righteous our life is in

an eternal perspective that one day the

the sky will unzip and the heavenly

dimension will be revealed and Jesus

will appear and there will be a reaction

between the heavenly air in this air

that will be the clouds of glory

fizzling as Jesus appears he will come

again to judge the living and the dead

and everything we have done we will give

an account for it before God thank God

the blood of Jesus means we are forgiven

before him for every bad thing we've

done but we also know that what we have

done in God's presence that which is of

eternal value the fruit that will last

will shine on that day and it'll be a

glorious moment the judgment that person

who thrives like that tree is living for

that day they're leaving this day in

light of that day because they know one

day I will stand before Jesus and he

will say well done good and faithful

servant and it says that the Lord

watches over the way of the righteous

but the way of the wicked will perish at

the end of all of this it doesn't matter

necessarily exactly where you walk but

who walks with you does the Lord watch

over your way is God part of my everyday

life and that means the hard times as

well as the good times the struggles as

well as the victories walking with Jesus

I encourage you you can do this today

pick a verse any verse take it and

meditate on it today and walk with that

with the Lord through that verse

throughout your day the Puritans

described it like this when you're

meditating on a verse through the day

you're thinking about it all day that's

a total apoyo increased okay may

fortaleza right I can do all things

through Christ who strengthens me you've

got that verse and you're walking with

the Lord the Lord is watching over your

way and then you have to stop and greet

people and interact with people so for a

moment you're doing other things but

when that's over your mind returns to

the person you're walking next to it

second now where were we okay we were

here and then you it's like you're

walking along a path with that verse and

then you stop and greet someone else but

then you go back to the conversation

with the person you're walking with the

Bible says that enoch walked with god

and then he was taken away he says

abraham walked with god and he was

called God's friend Noah walked with God

on his found righteous in his generation

I want to walk with God and have a

dialogue throughout the day and let that

word become part of me and let that

vitality flow into me and make those

dead places inside me come to life again

so I invite you to let's close this time

with prayer and I'd invite brant to come

on up and and let's let's pray that this

kind of life energy this vitality of the

word of God this intimacy with the Lord

would mark our daily life the way we

walk so i invite you to stand with me

there god i thank you so much Lord Jesus

that we do not have to live at the mercy

of our surroundings that we do not need

to be victims of the people in

situations that are around us I thank

you Father that we can be planted like

an oak tree to provide shade for others

and fruit for others

and then instead of being influenced

that we can exert an influence of life

to everything around us god I thank you

for that promise in the Book of Ezekiel

Lord Jesus about that River that would

one day flow from your throne Lord Jesus

a river of living water and that there

would be trees on either Shore of that

river and those trees would give fruit

and the water would become fresh and

that the leaves that those trees bear

would be used for healing of the

nation's god I pray that we would be

those plantings from you God that we

would be those trees Lord God that when

your word comes Lord God like Jeremiah

we would eat your word Lord Jesus and it

would be sweet to our taste Oh God that

that we would thrive and be green in

your presence Lord God oh we trust in

You Lord Jesus God I pray for people who

feel like they are living a time of

desert right now and as they look around

they don't see green pastures god I

thank you that even though they may feel

like that's the reality because of what

they're going through I thank you Father

that there is a river flowing that's

available to them lord god I thank you

that there is healthy soil that is

fertilized by that living water and I

thank you Father that as they tap into

that those nutrients Lord God father

that they will flourish too and father

we know God the trees don't sprout up

overnight we know that it takes time but

I thank you that it happens and it's

unstoppable it's a power that will not

stop and so I pray father for men and

women and children and youth Lord God

who plant themselves and your you and

your word and they experience the

promises in these verses I

pray that in Jesus name Amen