You and I were made to bear fruit. For the Christian, our “fruit” is changed lives... our own, and others. Yet some believers’ lives are “barren” for long stretches of time, bearing no fruit at all.
One day a young man was passing by the apple orchards of his neighbor and witnessed a strange thing: the neighbor was driving nails in some of the trees that were not bearing fruit. He watched in curiosity as this farmer approached a barren tree and drove four large, rusty nails into the base of the tree, north, south, east and west. Then he moved higher on the trunk of the same tree and repeated the process. When the young man questioned the neighbor, he told the boy, “Just wait until next spring. You’ll understand it then.”
When spring rolled around, the young man returned only to find that the apple tree with nails produced the biggest, reddest apples he had ever seen.
The farmer said, “You see, those rusty nails remind the tree that it was made to produce apples. Sometimes it forgets.”
Some of us need a jolt to remember that we were made to produce good fruit for the kingdom of God. And sometimes pain or hardship is the “nail” that reminds us. You’d be surprised at how many of us bloom and bear fruit in places where we once felt the sting of a nail.
The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he who is wise wins souls.(Proverbs 11:30)