July 27, 2018
“That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither — whatever they do prospers.” Psalm 1:3 (NIV)
My life changed that day — the day I opened the old tattered green Bible. The change was not instantaneous, but the seed of change was planted in my heart.
My life prior to that day was filled with all things church. Dr. Raymond Sanderson took my hand as I accepted Jesus as my Savior at the tender age of 7. The years that followed were full of mistakes erased by time and sin covered by grace.
After marrying the man of my dreams, with blue eyes and a red sports car (I said I was saved, not noble), my happily-ever-after began. My happy included a cute Cape Cod on Logan Street, a position teaching fourth grade at the local elementary school and new friends in a new church. Life was not only good; it was great, until we tried to add a baby to our bliss.
Two years of heartache and disappointment, basal body thermometers, Clomid medication injections, and frequent visits to the infertility specialist eventually resulted in the birth of our daughter. Life was once again great.
The “great” departed when more changes came our way: a new job in a new city with a new house. My husband’s new job meant he was gone a lot. I was alone a lot. The time alone made me see clearly that something was missing. I had no idea what it was or where to find it. I became keenly aware of the emptiness of my salvation. At a young age God saved my soul, but I had never surrendered it. A soul that’s saved but not surrendered is void of the fullness of Christ. I was living in the void.
God heard the cries from my empty, broken and unfulfilled heart. He met me in the chair that day as I opened the old tattered green Bible to Psalm 1. He was there when I read:
“Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the LORD, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither — whatever they do prospers” (Psalm 1:1-3, NIV).
On that day, God tenderly let me see what I was missing: I had failed to include Him in my happily-ever-after. My life “tree” was planted in places far from the streams of His living water. Planting myself far from Him had left me thirsty. The unfertile soil and lack of spiritual hydration was causing me to wither away.
He also revealed meditating on His Word was the key to finding what I was missing. It had never occurred to me that His law could be delightful or meditating on it day and night was possible.
How does one meditate on Your Word day and night and still get things done, Lord? I asked God. In a faint whisper I heard, Start here.
Is your life planted close to God? Does your heart have fertile soil for the planting of His Word? Are you like I was on that day — lonely, thirsty and feeling as if you’re withering away? Today can be the beginning of your “on that day” story.
Dear Lord, I want this to be the beginning of my “on that day” story. I want to open my Bible and allow You to plant the seeds of change in my heart. Following the ways of the world has made me feel as if I am withering away. Today I choose to believe Your Word has the power to change me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Psalm 119:15-16, “I meditate on your precepts and consider your ways. I delight in your decrees; I will not neglect your word.” (NIV)
Psalm 119:105, “Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path.” (CSB)
Have you ever felt like some emotions are off-limits? In the next First 5 study, When Words Fail, you’ll learn how to process what you’re feeling — whether it’s joy and peace or anger and bitterness — through reading the psalms. Study starts August 6. Click here to learn more!
To find more encouragement on how to connect God’s powerful truth to your life, watch Lysa TerKeurst teach LIVE at She Speaks, our annual conference for aspiring writers and speakers. You’ll find her tomorrow, Saturday, July 28, at 7 p.m. EDT* in the First 5 app! Click here to make sure you're ready to tune in!
*Start time subject to change. Please check the First 5 app to verify start time on July 28.
Connect with Wendy Pope on her website, wendypope.org, and enter to win a Wait and See book bundle.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
Where do I plant myself to be refreshed? What keeps you from planting yourself by the waters of God’s Word? Join the conversation, and let us know in the comments!
© 2018 by Wendy Pope. All rights reserved.
Originally published Friday, 27 July 2018.