Friday, March 2, 2007

Positively Positioned and Empowered to Prosper

He shall be like a tree
Planted by the rivers of water,
That brings forth its fruit in its season,
Whose leaf also shall not wither;
And whatever he does shall prosper.
(Psalm 1:3)
If you want to know how to come into the place of prosperity in every area of your life, study this man closely:

  • He is like a tree that has been planted (even transplanted) beside the rivers of water. He did not get there by himself, but was set there by God. He has a good foundation; his roots are well-watered. He is established, supplied and cultivated.
  • He brings forth fruit in season. The life of this tree is nourished by the rivers of water and the nutrients of the soil. It drinks in the sunlight and is faithfully tended by the grove-keeper. It goes patiently through its seasons — the season for resting and recreating, the season for germinating, the season for budding and blooming, the season for fruit-bearing, and the season for harvest. In the season of harvest, this man is not found wanting, but is very fruitful. He has much to give, and he shares generously of his bounty.
  • His leaf shall not wither. This man stays connected to his source, so he does not fall away or faint in the time of drought, or when the heat is on. He tends to the things that need to be tended, when they need to be tended, and does not leave the important details undone, so that even the tiniest of his leaves are full of life.
  • Whatever he does shall prosper. The psalm writer now moves from the metaphor of the well-watered tree and speaks plainly: Everything this man does increases his prosperity. He finds success and increase at every turn. Even when he makes mistakes, or experiences failures or adversities, he learns from them, adapts his strategies and perseveres until he sees his prosperity come forth. Not only is he himself blessed by his prosperity, but many around him also benefit from his success.
So, who is this man, and what is the secret of his prosperity? First, take a look at who he isn't:
Blessed is the man
Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly,
Nor stands in the path of sinners,
Nor sits in the seat of the scornful.
(Psalm 1:1)
This is not a man who takes his cues from the world system, from those who have no regard for God in their lives and do not care whether the things they do are morally right or wrong. He does not share the same pathway with these men, because it will eventually lead to destruction. He does not sit under their influence, because they treat everything — God, good, honor, truth, right, integrity, everything! — as a joke.

Now take a look at who this man is, and what he does do:
But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
And in His law, he meditates day and night.
(Psalm 1:2)
There it is — the secret of his success! He delights in the law of the Lord. He takes great pleasure in the ways of God. He craves them, and looks forward to them as a lip-smacking delicacy. His fills his heart, his mind, even his mouth with the Word of God, letting it forge his will, shape his emotions, correct his thoughts and empower the very words that roll off his own tongue. So he is established in a fertile place beside life-giving streams, and so he prospers, because he has found his source in God.