This year is my second year of gardening. I do not have a green thumb in the slightest, where as my grandma and grandpa were exquisite gardeners. I have learned so much this year by just plowing in, along with some advice from experienced gardeners, and lots and lots of prayers. That is how my garden grows, not with silver bells and cockle shells and pretty maids all in a row - but with prayer. Through that, God has taught me more about life than I ever thought would be revealed, as we planted the little patch months earlier. Jesus' parables about seeds and gardening became clearer as the plants grew in front of me.
I started some of the plants I started from seeds. It really was an experiment and I did not think that they would grow but God proved me wrong. The tomato seeds became the biggest plant in the garden and started taking up precious patio space. Despite their big garden presence, they lacked tomatoes. One tomato was harvested and another had begun growing but that was it from them. While watering one day, God revealed this truth: people may have a big influence on others or hold a high position, yet are not bearing fruit.
You were chosen. Jesus picked you out for a purpose and has appointed you to bear fruit - fruit that will last for eternity, not the temporal. You have an influence on people around you, whether you like it or not. Whether it is for better or for worse. You have an influence on your husband, friends, children, neighbors, co-works, the barista at Starbucks. People notice you. Perhaps for your fruit. Perhaps for your lack of it.
I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.
God has appointed you so that you can grow in him and from your growth and overflow of fruit, others will come to know him. You cannot produce fruit without first being centered in Christ. You have to be constantly in his word and growing in your personal relationship with him before you can bear fruit. You can do nothing apart from God or your fruit will be just that - lacking God.
Perhaps you find yourself in this situation now - feeling farther from God than you have ever before. I pray that you do not grow weary of doing good (Galations 6:9) but that you would take time to actively seek God and his direction. Perhaps you have sewn all the fruit in this chapter of ministry or particular friendships or jobs and he has something entirely different in store for you. Perhaps you need a refresher of being still and knowing he is God (Psalm 46:10). I pray that you would listen to his leading and see what other adventure he has planned for you.
I pray that your soul would be renewed and anything in you that is not producing fruit would be transformed. I pray that you be refreshed and open to receiving God's guidance and come alive.
Fall Afresh by Bethel Music seems to fit perfectly here. Have a listen.
spirit of the living god come fall afresh on me, awake me from my sleep.Here's to realizing your influence and bearing fruit. Here's to pruning and growing.