Flourishing In God
Great and wonderful are Your works, Lord. I praise Your name for You are holy, mighty and good.
Read Psalm 52
 For the director of music. A
Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
The title of this psalm refers to the account in 1 Samuel 22. The psalm tells us to boast in the Lord, not in our accomplishments or possessions.
Although this psalm is styled largely as an indictment directed against an evildoer, it actually addresses the virtuous reader. It directs its remarks toward a hypothetical wrongdoer but only so that the reflective, faithful reader will overhear, approve and act according to the values expressed in the psalm. The letter of James employs a similar rhetorical device when it declaims, “Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming on you” (James 5:1). Neither James nor the psalmist had conspicuously rich or blatantly evil people in their readership, but they address them to get through to the good people who will hear and heed their words.
The message of the psalm is simple: those who advance themselves at the expense of others and who trust in their own wealth and power will eventually fail; those who put their trust in God within the community of the faithful will thrive. It offers a warning to those tempted by power and wealth. It provides consolation to the oppressed and encouragement to the faithful to continue in their way of life.
Have you noticed that many biblical passages liken the righteous person to a tree? Here (8), “I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God.” Fêted in the Bible for their beauty, olive trees were symbols of fertility, blessing, peace and longevity (Jer. 11:16; Hos. 14:6; Psa. 128:3; Deut. 7:13). Apparently, they grew in the Temple grounds, where pictures of olive trees also adorned the walls. Their presence in both Temple and psalm cries out that those who trust in God and participate in the life of the believing community can know, even in the midst of trial, a life of creativity, fruitfulness and blessing.
What in your life robs you of spiritual vitality and what fosters growth and fruitfulness?
Father God, I want to see You glorified above everything else. You must increase and I must decrease.