Thoughts for the Day

Thursday, 29th February 2024: The two ways!

Holy Spirit Law Fruits of the Spirit God Psalm 1 Path

Reading : Psalm 1

Tree by river

Happy are those
who do not follow the advice of the wicked,
or take the path that sinners tread,
or sit in the seat of scoffers;
but their delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law they meditate day and night.
They are like trees
planted by streams of water,
which yield their fruit in its season,
and their leaves do not wither.
In all that they do, they prosper.

The wicked are not so,
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgement,
nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous;
for the Lord watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.

(Lectionary, New Revised Standard Version)


I am always thinking of Bunyan's 'Pilgrim's Progress' when a subject like two paths or two ways, comes up. There is the right path and the wrong path, and we have to make a choice. Psalm 1 offers two different ways to go, the first verse is the way we should follow, and the second verse the opposite. It seems appropriate that this psalm should open the book that gives us such treasure as Psalm 23 and Psalm 139, never mind the complexity of Psalm 119 with all its concern about the Law.

A tree will do well if given good soil and adequate sun and water, and will produce leaves and healthy fruit, but a tree planted in a desert where there is no water and the soil is poor will not survive. Psalm 1 says we are like the tree growing by the water, and we need the water to survive; we need to quench our thirst - not for water but for knowledge. In the Hebrew scriptures (our Old Testament) the thirst was for God's Law. For us it should be for God's word in our whole Bible; and for discernment as to His will for us as we draw closer to Him. Then we shall produce fruit - the fruit of the Holy Spirit.

So for those of us who read these Thoughts we are not like dead trees, like chaff as the psalmist says that is blown away in the wind and is useless. We are like beautiful willow trees, or perhaps like flowering cherry trees that will produce both fruit for God and for His church!


Lord God,
as we learn more about You
and Your will for our lives,
may we be truly blessed.
Forgive us our sins,
and help us to produce
the fruits of the Spirit, that is:
love, joy, peace, patience,
kindness, generosity, faithfulness,
gentleness and self-control,
so that we will draw others to You.

Follow Up Thoughts

Find out more about the Fruits of the Spirit:

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