One of my regular runs takes me past a field full of cows. They always show a great interest in me as I power (stagger) up the road past them. We exchange pleasantries and then I am gone for another day and we never think about each other again until the next time. I’m not sure what cows think about. Eating grass probably. Or the price of a pint of milk.
The field in question is bordered by a row of pear trees. These last few weeks their branches have been weighed down with fat, juicy pears. So much so that when I run past at least one usually falls to the ground. There are literally hundreds of them in the trees and hundreds lying on the ground below. Cows apparently do not like pears as the majority of them have been trampled on, resulting in an inedible, gooey mush. What a waste.
This summer Rebecca has been growing a little apple tree in our back garden. She has inherited the green fingers of her mother and grandmothers. The reward for her hard work has been two cooking apples which we have watched grow and ripen these last few months. Finally they have fallen and Rebecca has decided that they be used to make an apple pie which we can then all enjoy. What a treat.
What fruits are you growing in your heart? Nourishing and tending for until they have ripened and are ready to be utilised for the benefits of others? The Bible refers to them as the Fruits of the Spirit. We all have talents or gifts and it is up to us what we do with them. Some of us are more gifted than others. Your gift could be writing or public speaking and it may lead to you communicating with an audience of millions.
However if you misappropriate that talent then it is as wasted as a field full of pears being trampled underfoot by a dozen dozy cows. What is the point of influencing millions of others if you use that gift to deliver a message of hate, anger or bitterness? That is a waste of your God given gift, a wasted opportunity, a fruitless season.
Others may think they have no talent, or that it is so small as to be of no use to anyone. But the smallest gifting can be used for massive gain. You may be a good listener and be there in the right place at the right time for someone who desperately needs an understanding ear. Or it can be as simple as a kind heart; a person who looks out for their elderly neighbours or has a kind word for the loner kid in the school canteen. These acts are as precious as the apples from Rebecca’s apple tree.
Look into your heart. What is your gift or talent? Identify it. Then ask yourself what are you doing to nourish and develop it. And when it is ready how are you going to put it to good use in a world desperately in need of it. Become a blessing to a broken world. Don’t allow your fruits to rot on the vine or be trampled underfoot. Make a difference today.
Galatians 5:22-23 – ‘But the Fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.’
What is your favourite fruit?
Are you making the best use of your gifts or talents?