I have a great love affair with fresh fruit. I particularly love blueberries, strawberries, blackberries and raspberries. I love them in sugar, with whip-cream on top, in cobbler and freshly picked from the berry patch. In fact, I can’t think of a single dish with berries that I do not like. However, there is only one real problem with berries, they are seasonal!
Frozen berries are good, but they are not quite the same as fresh berries. Candy flavors just don’t come close to the real thing. The one real problem for berry lovers, then, is that there is no substitute. But wouldn’t it be great if we could create a fruit factory? Sure we have farms, but a how about a factory that can produce fresh fruit year round?
Yup, I know, it’s only a pipe dream. It ranks right up there with growing money on trees – another idea I’m all for!
In John 15:4-5 Jesus said, “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”
Just as we cannot produce those wonderful berries artificially, in the same way we cannot produce the Fruits of the Spirit artificially (Gal 5:22-25). Just as fruit is organic, dependent upon a natural environment, so too, the Christian life is dependent upon a spiritual environment.
The Christian life happens naturally when a person abides in Christ. Only from His life flowing through the believer can a person begin to exhibit the qualities of the Spirit. In order for that to happen, believers need to abide in Christ. The authentic Christian life is a result of His life flowing through and out from a person who abides in Him.
I suspect that I will never see a fruit factory happily spinning out fresh fruit. But I know that I if I cling to Jesus in faith, allowing Him to be the Lord of my life, then I can expect to see His fruit being produced in me in abundance!
Are you abiding Christ? And is His life flowing through you to produce a fresh crop of the Fruits of the Spirit? The desire of God’s heart is that you become a spiritual fruit factory where God’s life is put on display through you.