“An Apple A Day”

Apple Pickin Choices

We have all heard the expression of  “An Apple A Day” can keep the doctor away. If that expression is the truth, then why don’t we all eat an apple everyday?

I found this picture on the Web of a young boy picking an apple off a tree as his mother holds him up to reach the fruit (courtesy of The New York Apple Association).

I once lived in a home located on almost two acres. I had relocated my family from Southern California in 1980 and wanted to find property that was large enough to grow fruit trees. Since our new residence was in the state of Washington, my first choice had to be an apple tree. I read diligently on what types grew in my location, the type of soil, the sunlight exposure, the varieties for cross-pollination and so forth. The results of the fruiting after living there for 22 years?  Three good apples in 22 years!

 

 

THE SPIRITUAL FRUIT OF “PEACE”

Galatians 5:22, 23;  “BUT the fruit of the [Holy] Spirit [the work which His presence within us accomplishes] is love, joy, PEACE, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control…”  The nine examples of fruit bearing by Holy Spirit “rooted” in our being [body, soul, and spirit].

Could the unfruitful results of the two apple trees that I planted, been from a “root” problem and not a cross-pollination problem?  Could the absence of the FRUIT OF “PEACE” in your life be from the same problem?

“Have the roots [of your being] firmly and deeply planted [in Him, fixed and founded IN HIM], being continually built in Him, becoming increasingly more confirmed and established in the faith, just as you were taught, and abounding and overflowing in it with thanksgiving”  (Colossians 2:7—AMPLIFIED).

WOW!  “Abounding and Overflowing” FRUITAccording to the verse just quoted from Colossians, the FRUIT was produced from the ROOT.  The “root” is Jesus, and Jesus is LOVE!  It’s not a coincidence that in Galatians 5:22, the first fruit mentioned of the Holy Spirit is LOVE.

“PEACE” IS A BY-PRODUCT [a hybrid] OF THE GENETIC ORDER OF LOVE

“May Christ through your faith [actually] dwell (settle down, abide, make His permanent home) in your hearts [the “soil”]!  May you be rooted deep in love and founded securely in love”  (Ephesians 3:17)—I added the brackets for emphasis.”

A ‘GET DOWN AND PERSONAL FRUIT INSPECTION

I have borrowed from Creflo Dollar’s explanation of the “curtain-rod of love” analogy before in my Blogs.  A curtain rod placed above the window in your home with curtains hanging from the curtain rod. If one end of the rod falls to the floor, everything hanging on it slips off the curtain rod on to the floor too!

LOVE being the “curtain- rod”, if it slips from the placement on the hanger, everything else falls; “joy (gladness}, PEACE, patience (an even temper), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, …”   The FRUIT of PEACE then (along with other fruits of the Spirit), is the “hybrid by-product in the genetic order of LOVE”.

“For the whole Law [concerning human relationships] is complied with in the one precept,  You shall LOVE your neighbor as [you do] yourself” {Leviticus 19:18}  (Galatians 5:14).

THE “WORM OF SELFISHNESS” SPOILS THE FRUIT

Have you ever picked up an apple and taken a big bite and found a worm residing on the inside of the fruit? I have! I proceeded to then throw away the whole apple, not just the ‘bite’.  It looked good from the outside, a shiny red color, but on the inside of the fruit, there was an ugly “worm”.

Lets look at the “worm of selfishness”; an example: You find yourself going thru the checkstand of a grocery store. You are in a hurry and have picked up an item for dinner that you were missing. You scan the busy lines and see a checkstand marked “10 Items or Less”. You quickly get in line and in front of you is someone with 20 items, and it gets worse! They are paying for it with loose change!!  OOPS–So you drop your ‘one item’ on the floor [the FRUIT OF PEACE] and you leave the grocery store.

The results of your experience?  NO PEACE! And you left with some BAD FRUIT; hatred, strife, anger (ill temper) (Galatians 5:20).  By the way, in case you might be wondering, you will pay for the “bad fruit” later!

PRODUCING VINE- RIPENED FRUIT

It’s Berry Season in Whatcom County in the Northwest right now. There are berry stands alongside the road everywhere!  Raspberry, blueberry, blackberry and cherries from the Yakima Valley.  But nothing taste sweeter than picking the fruit right from the vines or trees.  They are the juiciest, sweeter and fresher than from the stores.  Someone local told me the other day that sixty-percent of the berries grown in the United States come from Whatcom County in Washington State.

There is an understanding on what goes into producing “Vine-ripened fruit” in the Book of Galatians.  Vines Complete Expository dictionary of Old Testament and New Testament Words says the about FRUIT:

“FRUIT being the visible expression of power working inwardly and invisibly [that’s the character of the fruit], being evidence of the power producing it”.

HOW IS YOUR “PEACE FRUIT” SHOWING UP ON THE VINE?

“You will fully recognize them [that’s you, that’s me–believers in Jesus] by their fruits”  (Matthew 7:16).

Here comes an “Oh, Oh!”  Having the “Fruit of PEACE” takes some work!  BUT whos’?  It’s NOT The WORD Detective (Mel) trying to be in harmony with man, or YOU trying to be more restful and content in a given situation.  THAT produces the WRONG fruit; the fruit of SELFISHNESS and then FEAR; the FEAR of not producing “good fruit”.

“BUT WHAT IF I DON’T FEEL LIKE IT TODAY?’

Turn to the Gospel of Matthew 5:9:

“Blessed (enjoying, enviable happiness, spiritually prosperous–with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the makers and maintainers of peace, for they shall be called the sons of God!”

How does all this “fruit-ripening” stuff [the fruit of PEACE] come into play with the edification and the building up of the inner man?

OUR PARTS TO PLAY; YOUR PART and MY PART

Let me give you, some of the nutritional values of the ‘Fruit” of ‘Peace’; let’s bring two sides together; The WORD Detective’s part? [that’s Mel’s part and your part too].  I must be neutral; I can’t have touchy or ‘bruised fruit’ on the tree; I can’t be too sensitive to what other people might say about me.

The NUTRITIONAL VALUES:  “I must have mercy and pity on people; I must have an entirely different view of the other person on the choosing.

If we are going to display the FRUITS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT; the Fruit of PEACE has only one concern.  It’s the glory of God amongst men and women.  Anything else….quareling and disputes in our relationships, distracts from the GLORY!

“And the HARVEST of righteousness (of conformity to God’s will in thought and deed—His Word) is [the FRUIT of the seed] sown in PEACE by those who work for and make PEACE [in themselves and in others, that PEACE which means concord, agreement and harmony between individuals, with undisturbness, in a peaceful mind free from fears and agitating passions and moral conflicts–the ‘worms of selfishness’]”  (James 3:18).

 

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s