If a seed is planted it may or may not grow. If it does grow it may not thrive or it may develop a disease. Some plants, especially fruit trees, need to reach a certain level of maturity before they begin to produce fruit. If a fruit tree does grow, it could provide good nourishing fruit for many years. What a shame it would be, if that tree was cut down because it’s owner, either through impatience or ignorance, thought the tree was useless. Faith is like a fruit tree, it may or may not grow from the seed, or it may not thrive, or perhaps it will be abandoned and cut down simply because it takes too long to reach maturity. I wonder how much good fruit is waiting inside people who are already on their journey of faith but have yet to reach a point where that faith will bear its first fruit. I wonder if they will wait long enough. Or will they be cut down by doubt or impatience too soon?
Luke 13:6-9 NLT
Then Jesus told this story: “A man planted a fig tree in his garden and came again and again to see if there was any fruit on it, but he was always disappointed. Finally, he said to his gardener, ‘I’ve waited three years, and there hasn’t been a single fig! Cut it down. It’s just taking up space in the garden.’ “The gardener answered, ‘Sir, give it one more chance. Leave it another year, and I’ll give it special attention and plenty of fertiliser. If we get figs next year, fine. If not, then you can cut it down.’”
Learning to live like Jesus takes a life time, but it only takes a moment to realise the error of your ways, confess your sin and know the Lord’s forgiveness. Then begins the long, slow, life long process of change that all disciples of Jesus must undergo. There is no finish point on the journey of faith. Each person’s route is unique and so progress can not be charted by making comparison with others. Likewise each pilgrim produces unique fruit only when their journey reaches its unique point of maturity. In the light of this reality, my goal is to stay focused on the progress of my own unique pilgrimage of faith and trust that I will reach a point of sufficient spiritual maturity. Then, perhaps, I will produce a good crop of spiritual fruit to harvest.
Deuteronomy 33:1-29, Luke 13:1-21, Psalms 78:65-72, Proverbs 12:25