“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self control; against such things there is no law.” Gal. 6:22-23 (NASB)
Once again, I am thrilled to report a worthy church sign sighting! It’s awesome how they make such delightful spiritual truths come to life! It’s amazing the theological and Biblical principles that can be imparted but a cute little ditty like: If You Want to Bear Fruit – Tap into the Root!
I saw this sign last week, while driving to Homosassa Springs and quickly made note of it. Not too many days later, one of my devotional readings covered Galatians 6:22-23. It was not a mistake or coincidence either. I believe God had a point for me to uncover and a point to rediscover. Allow me share both with you this morning.
Point #1 – If you are going to produce fruit – you’d better be part of the fruit tree!
The Scripture is quite clear in John 15:5: “I [Jesus] am the vine, you are branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”
If I want to produce fruit, I can’t do it if I am not connected to the source of the fruit. Therefore simply saying I am a Christian with no real connection to Christ – isn’t going to cut it! Certainly, you can try and might even produce some well-disguised fruit for moment or two. However in the long run, your lack of connection with the Vine will tell on you!
You see, hanging off the branches of a tree does not qualify you as part of the living plant itself. You must be graphed in, with your soul searching out to wrap itself around the very heart, the ROOT, of the plant as to intertwine yourself with it, until you are an inseparable part of the tree! It abides, or dwells in you and you abide in it.
Jesus said it plainly: apart from Him, we can’t do anything. Obviously this is a point my Father was trying to get me to rediscover. Abba Father, I do appreciate the reminder! I needed it.
Point #2 – The fruit we bear is not our own.
I love to uncover new treasures in His Word. It’s not that they are really new; after all, the Word was and is right there all along! But sometimes you read a verse and you focus on one aspect of the passage. Most likely, it is because it meets a need you have at that particular moment. Then you read it again later and something seemingly new just pops right out and smacks you between the eyes! Smack! Wow! Never saw that one before!
That is what happened to me. It was that proverbial brick on the head I keep asking for! I guess I’d better be careful what I ask for in the future! I likely assumed (and we all know what happens when we assume!) that as a believer, having the Spirit living within, I would naturally produce all this wonderful fruit. My problem is that I have been trying to take ownership of the fruit! And I can’t for the life of me figure out why! Any fruit I might produce o my own, would likely be akin to the strawberries we just bought.
They were supposed to be cream of the crop sweet home grown berries. Now I have lived in Plant City FL – winter strawberry capital of the world. I know how a good berry should taste. The ones we bought did not. Slightly close – but no cigar! Anything I try to produce on my mine – isn’t going to be anything like the real thing!
Why? It’s because the fruit I might bear is not of me! I have no part in it. The fruit is of the Spirit. It’s God’s fruit and His alone. I confused being a vessel for the fruit with ownership of the fruit itself.
The moral of the story is this: If I am tapped into the Root – I will bear fruit but not of my one accord, only of the Spirit. Then as a living, breathing, functional branch of the tree, I should be reaching to others offering the fruit to them, so that they too, would desire to become part of the Tree of Life!
I leave you with Ephesians 3:17-19:
”So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.
Love the Root and He’ll send you the Fruit!