Daily D – Psalm 92:12-15
But the godly will flourish like palm trees and grow strong like the cedars of Lebanon.
For they are transplanted to the Lord’s own house.
They flourish in the courts of our God.
Even in old age they will still produce fruit; they will remain vital and green.
They will declare, “The Lord is just! He is my rock! There is no evil in him!” (NLT)
Yesterday was a travel day. We arose at 4 AM and left for the airport before 5:30. We flew to Los Angeles, had a quick lunch, and then flew on to Hawaii where we will enjoy a few days in the sun.
Speaking of the sun, it has not arisen here. It is now 4:44 AM. I stayed in bed as long as I could. That turned out to be 3:30. A nap looms somewhere in the day ahead. So far, Baby Lucy is managing the travel well. She let out a wee cry when I was preparing coffee, but slumbers on even as a cacophony of shrill bird cries takes place in the courtyard. They apparently are, like King David in one of his psalms, “awakening the dawn.”
My first time in Hawaii was when I was sixteen years old. We returned when our daughter was in college. Now we are here again enjoying cooler weather than what we left behind in Texas. Also, we have a really nice view out of our room. The photo nearby and today’s verses reflect one another.
It is worth noticing a couple of things in these verses. First, “Even in old age they still produce fruit; they remain vital and green.”
We can flourish, remaining vital and green, as long as we live. How is this possible? When we walk with God through the seasons of life, there is a deepening, an expansion of our souls. Yes, as Moses reminds us in Psalm 90, we are quite quickly moving back toward our dusty beginnings. Even so, what remains when our skin and bones wear down and out, lives, really lives! Our strengthened souls endure forever.
Second, vitality is a choice. Some people die a kind of death long before their hearts stop beating. They choose not to think new thoughts. They accept no new challenges. They cease adventuring.
This kind of life cannot honor our Father in Heaven, can it? Even when limitations increasingly limit us, let us expand our hearts and minds as we remember and as we ponder what has been and what yet will be.
When God calls us home, let us be found thinking his thoughts along with him. Let our hearts beat in sync with his. May our past find itself wrapped in his grace, goodness, mercy, kindness, and his faithful love which endures forever. May we receive his gift of ultimate vitality, eternal greening, and ultimate flowering.
I will live a life of vitality and growth to the very end and the very beginning again.
Our Father, empower me to live a life of vitality. I do not want the kind of vitality commercials and prescriptions promise which require endless warning labels. I want the kind of vitality that comes from walking with you. I want to know you and experience you through every season of life. Amen.
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Deuteronomy 6:4-9 “Listen, Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Bind them as a sign on your hand and let them be a symbol on your forehead. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your city gates.“
Deuteronomy 1:2, 3 It is an eleven-day journey from Horeb to Kadesh-barnea by way of Mount Seir. In the fortieth year, in the eleventh month, on the first of the month, Moses told the Israelites everything the Lord had commanded him to say to them.
Psalm 52:8, 9 ”But I am like a flourishing olive tree in the house of God; I trust in God’s faithful love forever and ever. I will praise you forever for what you have done. In the presence of your faithful people, I will put my hope in your name, for it is good.“