When I was a child, we had a pear tree in the backyard. Every summer, it was my job to pick up the pears that had fallen off the tree—ripe, spotted, soft and even rotten pears.
Every so often, I would find one that had just fallen off because it was ripe and I caught it before it rotted, but that was rare.
Now my children have memories of when they were young picking up pears from that same tree years later.
Whether you are a gardener or not, no one likes a plant that doesn’t produce fruit.
And you definitely don’t want rotten fruit hanging around! It’s ugly, it’s in the way and it smells.
The whole purpose of having a fruit tree is to have fruit that you can eat.
In Mark 4, Jesus tells the parable of the different types of soil. Only one produced a good crop.
“Others…produce a crop – thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times what was sown.” Mark 4:20.
Like fruit left on a tree too long that falls off and rots, we can have nasty fruit in our lives. It can be that we just wanted to live our own lives for a while without any “rules” to guide us, or we’ve been held captive in a web of sin.
Maybe it’s fruit that was good, but has hung around for too long.
An example of that would be when we know God has told us to do something or speak to someone and we put it off. It becomes bad fruit because when we don’t do whatever He has asked and the time has passed for us to talk to that person.
Our opportunity has passed.
Are you distracted or are you too busy to be fruitful?
Are you doing things for God without listening to God?
Are you receptive, do you accept what the Lord tells you or asks of you without holding back?
Are you unrepentant or stubborn? Unforgiving?
Those are examples of bad fruit in our lives.
Jesus said “…he who abides in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5.
To be a fruitful person, we have to stay close to the branch, Jesus, and get the rotten fruit out of our lives.
The bottom line is this: Jesus must come first.
When we make Jesus number one in our lives, we will be more receptive to His voice and in turn, our lives will bear more fruit.
–by Pam Rehbein