Saturday, February 14, 2015

Lessons from an Orchard


The orchard was vast, long columns of apple trees laden with fruit bent down under their weight.  Gorgeously proportioned, the crimson, gold, and green apples decked the trees like ornament balls on stout Christmas evergreens.  Each fruit tree boasted hundreds of apples.  Any marred or misshapen fruit was detained by the owner to be made into jam, sauce, or pie.  Only the best, the perfect, the most beautiful specimens would be sold at market.

What fruit!  From one small apple seed, a large and bountiful tree—and that story repeated time and again as I walked the rows and gazed upon the breathtaking display, inhaled the sweet aroma, and munched on one of the delectable Honeycrips.

This morning, I read in the Word of God, “Being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God,” and I considered the orchard.  I thought of the fruits produced in my life by Christ’s righteousness—mercy, grace, peace, temperance, goodness, faith—and suddenly the truth resonated within me.

Those fruits of righteousness resulted from the seed I had in me—Jesus Christ the Righteous.  When I partook of His righteousness through His free gift of salvation, a spiritual orchard began to grow in the garden of my heart.  Any good work was really a product of His righteousness.  Any time I showed grace, demonstrated mercy, or acted in love, I evidenced the fruit of the righteous, indwelling Lord.

My life should abound in His love.  My actions should be covered in His grace.  My words should be seasoned with His wisdom.  And, as I walk in the Spirit, yielding each moment to that indwelling Comforter, the Spirit-produced fruit of righteousness will bring credence to that Seed within.