By A. Trevor Sutton
But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God. I trust in the steadfast love of God forever and ever
(Psalm 52:8 ESV).
Green can indicate many different things. You can be green with envy as you look longingly at what others have. You can be green with seasickness as you bob and dip over the open seas. You can be green with inexperience as everyone sees that you’re new on the job.
Or you can be green with health, life, and vibrancy.
A green tree is one that is fully alive, actively rooting deeply in the soil, and keen on growing lusher each day. While it’s not good to be green with envy, seasickness, or inexperience, it is very good to be green with growth.
Being rooted in Christ makes it possible for you to exhibit this kind of greenery. Psalm 52:8 describes a green olive tree. This tree is fully alive, abundantly fruitful, and growing stronger day by day. It pictures for us what it means to be eternally alive in Jesus, bearing spiritual fruit to the glory of God, and growing in faith and trust in him. It’s a very good thing to be green with life in Christ!
But pause to notice what the passage says about the location of the tree; this tree is “in the house of God.”
In Old Testament times, the house of God was the place of God’s unique presence. It was where the Lord’s people could seek him and be sure to find him. It was where God’s people could hear and feast on God’s Word, just as he had promised. And that location is precisely why the olive tree is green with growth.
Where are you planted, man of God? It is so easy for our roots to creep into the unhealthy soils of lust, greed, spiritual pride, and envy. Ever so subtly, our roots can drift into the shallow sands of sin, the clay of evil cravings, and the stony ground of Satan’s temptations. Ever so subtly, we become self-righteous, rather than relying on what Jesus did for us on the cross. In the wrong soil, green growth soon becomes wilted death.
Prayerfully and carefully check your roots. Only the steadfast love of God, only the forgiving comfort of Christ, will give life and growth—for now and for all eternity!
Editor’s note: This devotion is slightly adapted from one of CTA’s devotion books for men, Man of God: Rooted in Christ.
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