Reflection on Psalm 1: I Want to Grow Like a Tree

Landscape with Olive Trees by Vincent van Gogh

Reflection on Psalm 1 by Jim Harnish
reprinted with permission

O life-giving God,
whose power surges through the whole creation,
I want to grow like a tree.
Not like a weed, Lord, or an overnight kudzu vine,
but like a strong, healthy tree,
patient enough to grow slowly,
but always growing,
always sinking deeper roots,
always stretching wider branches,
always reaching higher into the sky.

Like a tree, Lord,
that can hold its own when a hurricane blows in from the Gulf.

One day, Lord, the tree will fall.
It will have been here long enough.
Even sequoias die.
That’s okay, Lord.
No tree lasts forever.
But may my tree fall because it has lived its life fully,
richly, deeply, drawing everything it could from the soil
and giving back life to the rest of creation.
May the fruit of my tree
be a gift of life to others.

Thank you, Lord, for the soil in which you have planted me.
This is where I want to grow.
Like a tree beside the waters.
I want to grow.

Reflection on Psalm 1 © Jim Harnish
Please contact Jim directly for information and permission to publish this work in any form.

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