Growing In Faith
Posted: November 21, 2020
Author: Kerry Lytle
Psalm 92:12-15, NLT
"But the godly will flourish like palm trees and grow strong like the cedars of Lebanon. For they are transplanted to the Lord's own house. They flourish in the courts of our God. Even in old age they will still produce fruit; they will remain vital and green. They will declare, "The Lord is just! He is my rock! There is no evil in Him!"
Scripture repeatedly connects the fruitfulness of trees to the spiritual fruit of mankind. In the above scripture, ‘the godly’ are compared to palm trees. There are many characteristics of palm trees that could be used as analogies to how we as Christians should be.
Palm trees grow straight. Unlike other mangled or twisted trees, palm trees follow a direct path towards the light. The palm tree is upright. Jeremiah spoke of people being as “upright as the palm tree.” The palm tree rears itself straight up in the air, erect, stately, and strong. It is a fitting image of a good person who is not crooked, but is upright in character and looks towards the light of Christ.
The roots of the palm tree go down deep into the earth. A palm tree has great roots that make the tree strong and substantial. We, as Christians, need to be so deeply rooted in Christ and His Word so we can stand strong. Also, the palm tree does not snap under pressure. The palm tree bends and strains in the wind and the storm, but it stands because of its deep roots and its natural flexibility. A Christian rooted in Christ can stand the winds and temptations and the storms of trial. We also have to be flexible to whatever life throws at us. We cannot snap under pressure.
The palm tree is graceful. It is the emblem of grace and beauty. In the Old Testament, palm trees adorned the temple. Jericho was called the “city of palm trees” and was one of the most beautiful cities of the ancient world. In heaven the saints are portrayed as those clothed in white robes with palms in their hands, the emblem of beauty and grace, and victory. We are to remain graceful regardless of what is going on around us and within us.
The palm tree is an evergreen. Other trees turn dark and grey during the winter, but the palm tree holds its rich, deep color. It shows its color in all seasons. It is the symbol of faithfulness. Paul said, “Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season” (2 Timothy 4:2, NLT). Can you say: I will be an evergreen. I will be like that palm tree, showing my colors at all times”? Can you say, “Anytime, Lord, day or night, in summer or winter, in darkness or light, I will follow you; in sickness, in health, in joy, in sorrow, in adversity, or in prosperity, I will be true”? We have to display faithfulness to the Lord regardless of our circumstances.
The palm tree is a fruitful tree. It produces dates for nourishment. Galatians 5:22-23 (NLT) says, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance” We, as Christians, should be displaying and living a fruitful life to nourish ourselves and those around us.
The palm tree naturally knows how to shed and get rid of dead leaves so it can produce healthy ones. We have to learn to recognize the "dead leaves" in our lives and shed them or rid them from our lives, so we can produce healthy ones instead.
The palm tree has beauty. It represents peace, life and strength. It is used by God in His Word as an example of what we should strive for. Make your life flourish like the palm tree. There are too many good reasons and benefits not to!