I have known about God for about 7 years, and I have been officially baptized in His healing waters, partaking of the flesh of Christ (no not literally). But still I ask, where is the fruit of my life?
This is an important question, one that cannot be ignored anymore.
Matthew 7:16-20Revised Standard Version (RSV)
16 You will know them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles? 17 So, every sound tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears evil fruit. 18 A sound tree cannot bear evil fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Thus you will know them by their fruits.
Doesn’t that just scare you? Or maybe it only scares me because I don’t produce the good fruits…
Yes, Second-Great-Awakening-Era Preacher, here is a good verse to use in a fire-and-brimstone kind of sermon that will leave ladies crying on bales of hay. This is not so much a sleepy-Sunday afternoon-in-the-valley kind of verse, is it?
But come now, allow me to be serious. So what we’re saying here is that we can’t bear any bad fruits… but how is that even possible? Even if you had a 100 years to live and you were a Christian from childhood, how could you possible eliminate all your bad fruits?
And what are bad fruits? Are they just actions? Or are they thoughts too?
And what about when the Devil or the voices or society tells us to do things and we think about doing them? Does that count?
But maybe these are the wrong questions to be asking. I mean, they are valid questions that everyone asks, but maybe these are not the questions that will get us to our goal- fruit production. That is the goal, right? Okay, maybe step one is clarifying what the goal is. And then the right question is simply, Lord, in Your mercy, how may I produce good fruits?
I think we’re finally getting somewhere.
But am I getting anywhere? Look at my life! I would like to help bring people to God, but I don’t seem to be able to do that. And it’s no wonder, I’m such a mess myself. No one who knows me personally seems to like me that much. Not that it’s important to be thought highly of for the sake of being thought highly of- but it is important to give God a good name, or at least do what He asks!
Sometimes I wonder why I have so much jealousy, anger, and sorrow locked up inside. But how can I blame God for it? How can I blame anyone else for it? I sin because I choose it. I sin because I don’t value God highly enough. That is the only reason. I want to blame it on my circumstances and mental illness- but where’s that going to get me?