‘To have good fruit you must have a healthy tree; if you have a poor tree, you will have bad fruit. A tree is known by the kind of fruit it bears. You snakes—how can you say good things when you are evil? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. A good person brings good things out of a treasure of good things; a bad person brings bad things out of a treasure of bad things.’ (verses 33-35)
Read Matthew 12:33-42
Farmers and gardeners know how important it is to have good soil in which to plant their crops. Orchardists fertilise the ground around their fruit trees, knowing that the quality of the fruit will depend on what the tree has been fed.
Our health as believers in Christ also depends on what we are fed. We need to feed daily on God’s word, so our hearts aren’t filled up with the unhealthy or less nutritious junk food that the world feeds us. By watching television we can become knowledgeable about world affairs. By listening to the radio we can learn about what’s going on in our state. But our growth as Christians relies upon what we receive from the word of God. The spiritual fruit we produce—our attitudes, values and behaviour—will provide evidence of our growth in this area.
How well are you growing? What kind of fruit are you producing? What can you do to push your roots further into the rich soil of Jesus?
Lord, fill me with your goodness every day, so I can bear the kind of fruit you are looking for. Amen.
by Julie Hahn, in ‘Refreshment for each Day’ (LCA, Openbook, 2003)
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