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The Good Life

(208)

Sermon shared by Wayne Field

February 2002
Summary: Psalm 1 describes how to be truly successful in life.
Denomination: Baptist
Audience: General adults
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beside a life giving stream; they are never without a resource to sustain their lives under any circumstance.

Illustration: I like ferns - I think what it is about them is that they are so easy to grow and that when they sprout a new frond you can see it open up over a period of a few days - you can watch its progress. I actually get excited when I see a new frond appearing.

You may be going through a time like my fern has gone through. My fern was rejected by its previous owner, he said if I could be bothered nursing it I was welcome to have it for nothing. When I first saw it, it was uprooted from the ground and sitting out in the scorching sun without a pot. Most of its fronds were burnt brown - its previous owner didn’t hold out much hope for it - it was worth nothing to him. But I like ferns and I could see the potential in this one.

So I took it home, re-potted it (I bought a pot especially), trimmed all it’s burnt fronds back leaving it with only two (and those weren’t too healthy - show example), gave it some quick release fertilizer, placed it in a nice shady spot (They love the shade), and gave it a big long drink. I’ve been watering it about every other day since. In just four weeks it grew three new fronds, and soon after that I cut off the last original frond (Show it). It didn’t need that frond any more - the new growth was providing the life it needed now.

I like ferns, how much more does your heavenly Father love you? Maybe you want another chance at life – then you need to be transplanted into his Son. Maybe you have been transplanted but you your faith is a bit like this burnt frond - only just alive. You need to trim some old ways to make way for new growth and kingdom fruitfulness.

Notice that the blessed person is “like a tree planted by streams.” This is no wild bush - it was planted intentionally and it has an owner who wants to lovingly tend it - and so your heavenly Father wants to lovingly shape you for the best possible life.

3. Blessed with all blessings
“Whatever he does prospers” (v3b)

And what a life it is! Not only is the believer blessed by God, in Christ but also with all blessings. Because, “Whatever he does prospers” What an awesome promise! It’s almost too outrageous to believe it. At least it would be if we were to look for the fulfilment of such a promise with our own eye-sight.

This final line of v3 has often been interpreted to mean that following Jesus is materially rewarded in the here and now. Instead to “prosper in all they do” should be viewed through the eye of faith. It’s not outward prosperity that is most valuable. It’s the prosperity of the soul.

Often it is for the health of the soul that we find our income inadequate; often it is for the health of our soul that we suffer grief; often it’s for the health of the soul that our family life is in upheaval; often it’s for the health of our soul that we are harassed by life and circumstances. The worst things that can
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