Fruit. Sweet, delicious fruit. Living in San Antonio, we are very close to the best peaches maybe in the world. They are Fredericksburg peaches. I don’t know what it is, but these peaches are so good. When you take a bite, juices burst out with flavor. Sugary sweet juice will run down the sides of your mouth. It gets into my beard and it is so good, it makes me not want to wash my beard for a week just so I can taste this fruit from Heaven. And this is the effect, we are supposed to have on the world around us.
Are you sweet? Hmmmm. I know, someone out there did not like that question. But this is what we have been called to do. Jesus said that we are to bear much fruit in John 15. When I interact with people, the joy, the love, the grace that flows out of me into them should be sweeter than even those Fredericksburg peaches. We are the salt of the earth. We are a city on a hill. God is filling us with His Holy Spirit which makes in us the seeds for this wonderful fruit. Born into us is spiritual fruit that should cause people in the world to be in our presence. It is not because of who we are, but because of who He is. They don’t know this at first. All they know is that when they are around us, they know it is sweet and wonderful.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. (NIV 1984)
The Lord is our vine and we are the branches. We receive the spiritual nutrients that produce this wonderful fruit and who wouldn’t love this fruit. Doesn’t everyone want to be loved? Doesn’t everyone want to be around people who are patience rather than impatient, kind rather than rude, good rather than evil, faithful rather than flaky, gentle rather than harsh, controlled rather than out of control? It just seems to me that if we were living as the Lord has called us to live the sweetness of our life would draw people to us and then to the Lord. We are the Fredericksburg peaches to the world.
So…what do we get in return? I mean, if I am just blessing you and blessing you, don’t I deserve to get something in return? Am I am going to be sugary-sweet to you without expecting the same from you? Seem reasonable, doesn’t it?
But in the forest or whever fruit trees grow, animals some times take them. Possibly, they fall to the ground and animals eat them. And what happens after they eat the fruit? Well…you may not want to say it, but I will do it for you. They poop!. Have you ever been pooped on?
The truth is, and let’s be honest out there, sometimes you give the best you can and people will poop on you anyway. You love them, give to them, provide for them, and then what do you get–POOP!
Now, don’t start thinking I am some kind of crazy bald preacherman. I did not come up with the analogy. It was the Lord. He says that we will be like trees planted by the water giving fruit in season. If I am in Him, I will bear much fruit. As right as it is for an apple tree to produce apples, the Spirit of God in us produces good, sweet, and juicy spiritual fruit. But some body or some animal is going to eat that fruit. The fruit I produce is not for me, it is for others. And after they have consumed the fruit, they….well….you know what I am going to say….just say it already! Ok fine! THEY POOP!
If I haven’t disgusted you yet, let’s keep following the analogy given to us by the Lord. When the animal poops, it decomposes and it becomes an active agent that actually helps the ground to become more fertile so that more fruit can be grown. Fertilizer is what it becomes. Can I say church that we all need to get fertilized on every now and then. We need for people to hurt us and betray us to keep us going back to the Lord. We learn how to let Him carry our burdens and sorrows.
Keep in mind that this is a natural part of the analogy. Poop is going to happen. It is our attitude though that can transform the poop into fertilizer. They both smell, but one is something you step in causing a big mess. The others allows us to grow and to thrive, producing more fruit for others. So, after we give our self to people as the juicy fruit of God’s presence into their lives, do not be shocked with they poop on you. IT’S GOING TO HAPPEN!! Don’t be shocked, but also don’t get angry and stomp on it. That never ends well. Instead, take your pain to the Lord and allows Him to heal you. Basically you have a choice, when you are bearing much fruit to the world, you can either be pooped on leaving your life a smelly mess, or you can be fertilized on leaving your soul more fertile able to produce more fruit.
Forgive the “pooper” and take your pain to the Lord. He will use your pain, teaching you greater faith, greater forgiveness, greater love, and you will produce even more fruit. It’s your choice. Poop or fertilizer, it’s your choice.