There once was a vineyard owner that had looked for fruit from his fig tree for three years but had found none. The vineyard owner was very disappointed in this tree and was inclined to cutting it down because of its barrenness. However, the compassionate gardener who tends to the vineyard, who waters and fertilizes the trees in order to bring them to their peak of fruitfulness pleads the owner for more time. More time to nourish this tree. To fertilize, water, and care for it so that it may be abundant in fruit. The gracious vineyard owner responds in patience and grants the tree another year of life to produce fruit. (Luke 13)
We represent the fig tree. Planted firmly in the ground and like a lot of us—alive, breathing well, but just not going anywhere.
I want you to think of yourself for a moment.
Do you understand the purpose of your life? Do you know what your life could become? Ask yourself, “What is the purpose for my very existence, the purpose of why I am drawing breath, eating and taking up ground space on this earth this very moment?”
You are alive. You have a place. But are you producing fruit? Are you living as if you were part of a bigger purpose?
Cause I mean, think about it, the reason why a tree is planted is for the sole purpose of producing fruit, am I right? And if the tree doesn’t, it’s pretty much useless. And it’s not to say that the tree is dead and unable to produce fruit. The tree just hasn’t had the proper care and nourishment, and so it’s just there, unaware of the potential it has, taking up space in the ground, marking time.
I) Nourish Your Soul
-Spend an extra 5 minutes in your daily prayer time.
Does this mean you might have to wake up a little earlier? Possibly, yes. Does it mean you may have to cut your lunch break by 15 minutes? It could. There are so many ways you can fit this into your life but the point is, is that you begin somewhere and that you stick to it. You’d have so much clarity and peace afterwards that your soul will thank you.
-Take a 10 minute walk outdoors WITHOUT your phone. There’s nothing more liberating than soaking in the natural beauty that surrounds us daily. Whenever I spend any time outside I feel as though heaven is embracing me. Nature reveals so much of God’s power and beauty, it humbles me and fills my soul with gratitude.
II) Trust the cycle
With any fruit, it doesn’t just appear in the produce aisle. In order to get the fruit, it is tended to. It takes time to nurture and develop. It starts as a seed, a seedling, a sprout, and then eventually, you can pick your fruit!
Well, just like in nature, we grow the same way. We must be planted in good soil, nurtured, and have a good light source. We also don’t see the results (fruit) of our habits until later on in life when it may just be too late. My point is, just because you haven’t seen or felt amazing results after putting off your old harmful habits and submitting your time and life to God doesn’t mean you aren’t producing. Good things take time. Don’t get discouraged! Keep pushing through, your fruitful season is right around the corner.
III) Exercise Faith
Growing the fruit of the spirit is a lot like growing muscle. The muscle is already a part of our body but its up to us to choose whether we want to see any growth or not. We have to consistently choose to exercise Faith and believe that we have all we need in order to grow into our peak of fruitfulness.
Now remember, towards the end of the parable the gracious vineyard owner granted the compassionate gardener more time. More time to enrich the tree with nutrients of life in order to bring it up to fulfill its purpose. The purpose of bearing fruit. However, we must always remember that no one knows exactly how much more time we have. So my advice to you—get moving! Begin producing ripe fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Be a fruitful fig tree.
“As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.” -John 15:4