And he told this parable: “A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. And he said to the vinedresser, ‘Look, for three years now I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and I find none. Cut it down. Why should it use up the ground?’ And he answered him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and put on manure. Then if it should bear fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.’ ” Luke 13:6-9
I can identify with the man who had the fig tree. I have not had a lot of luck with fruit trees. I had a pear tree for about ten years and never got a pear. I tried another variety and same results. I cut both down. Then I tried a peach tree. I actually got one peach one year and then nothing. Cut that tree down also. Now citrus is another thing all together. I have a Myer lemon that after four years now produces over 400 lemons a year. I get about three dozen grapefruits a year and another Three to four dozen Satsuma oranges the past two years. But I know the frustration of a tree that does not bear fruit.
What kind of fruit do you bear? Not from a tree but spiritual fruit. Are you like my pear tree taking up space and nutrients all the while producing nothing? Hopefully you are like my lemon tree producing abundant fruit. God expect each of us to bring others into the flock. He expects each of us to nourish fellow believers. God expects us to be productive.
Now the good thing is that for those who are not bearing fruit, God is patient. God is a lot more patient that I am. The second pear tree, I gave it four years. The peach tree got three. I am glad God is not me as I was very slow to produce fruit. If God had had my patience I would have been gone after a few years. Instead God allowed me to find my way and showed me where I was needed to do His work.
God will wait all our lives for us to bear fruit. The single most important fruit we can bear is His image that is to accept Jesus and the free gift of salvation. If you think that one act is not bearing fruit then you are not seeing how those around you act now that you are His. They may not say anything but they notice the change. Some are pleased and of course others are angry because the person they knew has changed. God has all the time in the world to wait on us. We however do not. If we tarry too long we may find we are like the fig tree in today’s verses, dug up and cast aside forever separated from God.
But just accepting His gift is not all God expects of us. He wants us to produce in abundance just like my lemon tree. My lemon tree provides fruit for dozens of people every year. And like the fruit of the spirit I get something back. One of my neighbors takes my lemons and makes lemon bread and shares the bread with my family. Whatever fruit you produce for God some of it will came back to you.
Have a blessed day,