‘Appreciation’ Meditations No.31: Appreciating the Whole
Psa 92:14 “They will still bear fruit in old age.”
I wonder, do we appreciate this? The past builds into the present which leads into the future, a seamless flow, even though we sometimes think the changes were bumpy? There’s a word in that verse above that speaks volumes – ‘still’. That implies they bore fruit in the past and will continue to bear it in the present and will keep on bearing it in the future, the fruits of righteousness, of goodness, of love, the DNA of their Father. That also speaks of purpose, direction, meaning, achievement, fulfilment. Wow! What a life – and it’s all because of Him. Hallelujah!
Very well, let’s unpack all that before we finish this series. Perhaps we should start by seeing the context of the above quote: “The righteous will flourish like a palm tree, they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon; planted in the house of the Lord, they will flourish in the courts of our God. They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green, proclaiming, “The Lord is upright; he is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in him.” (v.12-15) Although I know my tendency is to use these verses as encouragement for those moving on in years, there is a sense whereby the package of verses apply to all of us, regardless of age. So now let’s unpack it, bit by bit.
“The righteous will flourish like a palm tree, they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon: This is a general declaration for all of us who call ourselves believers, Christians, the righteous. We are that because in our past we were called and convicted by the Holy Spirit and surrendered to Jesus as both Saviour and Lord. His goal for us is that we will flourish, be spiritually healthy and grow as we live out our lives in the presence of the Lord – “in the courts of our God” – with His Holy Spirit indwelling us. That is the nature of our ongoing life throughout our time on this earth, the base line, if you like, for how we live, with the Spirit producing His fruit in us (Gal 5:22,23) in all its forms. (How many of us appreciate that I wonder?)
Now that is the ‘present’ aspect of it but the clear inference or implication of it is that we will keep on and on living like that and it doesn’t matter how old we are. We may age and become more infirm but that shouldn’t change that ‘fruit-bearing’ we’ve just referred to. This is the ongoing goodness of God, that it is by His enabling that this keeps on happening in us and will keep on happening until our hearts and minds come to a standstill, and that which is the real ‘me’ (soul and spirit) continues on into eternity. All that we have been referring to, what goes on in us and through us, is God’s goodness, His blessing on us so that we more and more enjoy this life and feel fulfilled in it. Can we appreciate that ongoing plan and goal and rejoice in it? May it be so. Amen.