Blessed is the one
who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
or sit in the company of mockers,
but whose delight is in the law of the LORD,
and who meditates on his law day and night.
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—
whatever they do prospers.
—Psalm 1:1-3 NIV

It was another late spring in New England. School was winding down and the kids were antsy. All five of them tumbled into the car and buckled in for the 40-minute carpool ride. “Let’s play blossom tree,” I chimed, using my best sing-song voice. I used this survival tactic to avoid the silliness that would follow if I didn’t intervene. “Ok!” they cheered.

The blossom tree game is like punch buggy without the punch. And, for some reason, they liked it. Maybe they were competitive or bored or they just really, really liked blossom trees. It doesn’t matter, because it worked. The kids were laser focused on spotting a tree, any tree, lit up with white, yellow, or pink blossoms. Then yelled “blossom tree!”—about fifty times before we arrived home!

Discovering a blossom tree was the only reward. No one kept score and no one cared. I don’t think they thought about how miraculous it was for a seemingly dead tree to come back to life after a long, cold winter. They just enjoyed the game. They were along for the ride, pointing at all the beautiful “fruit.”

What about you? Do you notice the blossom trees God has planted along the path? Or, are you a blossom tree, reflecting Jesus as others drive by where you’re planted? Since God mercifully grafted us into His family tree (Romans 11:17*), we get to be fruit bearers. Isn’t that cool? And, Psalm 1 reveals the secret of how to force the bloom: He doesn’t “walk in step with the wicked” and he “delights in the law of the Lord” and “meditates on the law, day and night.” God’s Word is like fertilizer to the soul!

So, why does hanging out with wicked people who mock the Lord keep the blossoms dormant? Because germination only happens when life-giving elements like nutritious soil, water, and sunshine are present. Like most of the religious leaders in Jesus’ time, the wicked are spiritually bone dry and fruitless. That doesn’t mean we shun them. But, like Jesus, we spend our time with those who have a desire to know Jesus. Mostly, our time with them is spent sharing His Word and loving them! In the same way athletes mix protein powder into their smoothies to encourage muscle growth, God’s Word penetrates our hearts supernaturally as we exercise faith. In other words, God’s Word gives us spiritual nutrients to stimulate growth—and bear fruit—as we follow Him.

Moreover, Jesus said He is the Living Water and the Bread of Life. You know what else He is? The Word. The One who came to fulfill the law that we are to meditate on day and night if we are to bear spiritual fruit. Can we live as a Christian without reading the Word? Can an athlete live without proper nutrients? Yes. But why would you want to deny yourself of something God has miraculously made available to you (in many versions, most likely). Yes, Jesus is all we need for salvation, but I believe He wants so much more for us than being “born again.” Jesus wants us to grow into big blossom trees that others see and say, “Wow, God is good and faithful and powerful and gracious.” I don’t know about you, but I want to produce spiritual fruit—fruit with lots of nutrients and calories, like almonds, that will help nourish other people and glorify God. I want to be a blossom tree.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples” (John 15:5-8 NIV).

*If some of the branches have been broken off, and you, though a
wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now
share in the nourishing sap from the olive root 
(Romans 11:17 NIV).

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and
peace in believing, that you may abound in hope
by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13 NJKV).

Marlene McKenna



Sweet Selah Ministries

To inspire a movement away from the belief that “busy is better”
and toward the truth of God’s Word that stillness and knowing
Him matter most—and will be reflected in more effective work and service

To offer biblical resources and retreats that help women pause (Selah)
and love God more deeply as they know Him more intimately (Sweet)

If you’ve been blessed, keep the blessing going!
Click over to our Donation page … and thanks.





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