The Bible says that you will know a tree by the fruit it bears.
I want to continue from my last blog post. I never actually got to the thought that I had this morning, but this is WAYYY to long to have added it to the previous post. Actually, the thought I had was more of an interesting metaphor that came to mind when thinking about my two Randoms (from the last post) and plenty of men like them. Men (people in general) are like trees. The Bible says that you will know a tree by the fruit it bears. Regardless of your belief system, I think we can all agree that this statement is pretty spot-on. A lot of times, we as women find a man (note, he didn’t find US) as a tree that is still developing. He may have some beautiful leaves and even some fragrant flowers starting to bloom. Or maybe he’s still just a struggling sprout covered in dirt, trying to break his way through the ground. We see his POTENTIAL. I believe that as women, we have a gift (though it can seem like a curse) to see the potential in people and situations. We are visionaries. Though we have a seed, we see a strong, mighty oak tree. Though we have a man who lacks vision, direction, or action, we see Moses. Though he may lie like Jacob, we see Israel. However, though our vision can serve as a blessing to the RIGHT man, when used with the WRONG man, it can bring bitterness and frustration.
It is also important to discern and BE HONEST about what season a man (or person) is in.
You see, we get caught up in the potential of a man, and we do everything we can to make him GROW. We feed him, water him, nourish him, and sometimes change may occur. He may begin to BEAR FRUIT. We get excited because we feel that things may be looking up. He starts talking about going back to school. He starts mentioning the two of you getting married. He starts doing things that are evidence TO YOU that things are going to work. But what we fail to see is that though the fruit is there, it is not RIPE yet. So when we take it off of the tree and sink our teeth into it, our joy quickly turns to pain as we are left with a bitter taste in our mouth. Why hasn’t he gotten his act together? Why hasn’t he married me yet? Was all of this this just TALK? While in some cases, it may be, for many men, it’s not that he’ll NEVER be the sweet, delicious fruit that you long for. It’s that RIGHT NOW, he’s NOT RIPE. It’s not that he’ll never get there. It’s that he’s NOT READY. So you’ll get the excuses, the lies, the games, all the bitter fruit of a man who has not yet matured. And while none of this is an excuse to allow a guy to mistreat you, it is also important to discern and BE HONEST about what season a man (or person) is in.
The Bible says in regards to a seed that some plant, some come to water, some are like the sun shedding light so that it can grow, etc. As we mature, people come into our lives for various reasons. Some are meant to plant the seed of change in our hearts. Others come to water it. Some give us energy with the light that they shine onto our lives. Other give us nourishment when we need it. And finally, when we are matured, there are those who enjoy the fruits of all the others’ contributions. We need not get mad at those who enjoy the fruits of our labor because we too are enjoying the fruits of the contributions of someone, somewhere. And we don’t even know it.
Think about how YOUR past relationships have contributed to who you are today. Now, would you MARRY those people today?
Many times we try to hold onto to someone, failing to realize that our job was simply to plant the seed. We try to enjoy the fruit, when our job was simply to shine light onto their lives to help them reach maturity. We try to MAKE him OUR husband, when the truth is, he isn’t ripe yet. As difficult as it may be to accept, our part to play is in helping him become SOMEONE ELSE’S husband. You don’t think it’s true? Think about how YOUR past relationships have contributed to who you are today. Now, would you MARRY those people today? Probably not. They simply helped you to GROW. In the same fashion, many of us are trying to enjoy unripened fruits and wondering why we keep ending up with a bitter taste in our mouths. We keep keep planting, watering, and working ourselves to exhaustion to get a man to see what he will only see when he’s fully ripened- when he’s fully MATURED. And while sometimes God calls us to be patient and suffer long with someone, many times we just refuse to accept that our job was simply to cultivate. And now our job is DONE.
Friends, I urge you, please take time to evaluate those in your life. In the midst of all your toiling- your planting, watering, digging, fertilizing – all your nagging, complaining, pressuring, and arguing, take stock of the fruit you’ve been getting. When you bite into, is it sweet and satisfying? Then enjoy! You are reaping the blessing of the labor that it has taken for him to reach this place of maturity. Or do you have to spit it out because you can stand how bitter it is? Then it may be time to accept what your purpose was and move on.
Even Jesus put a time limit on how long the fig tree had to bear fruit before He cursed it. If it has been months, years, decades, and still NO FRUIT or the fruit is STILL BITTER, it’s time to accept that this man, woman, etc. is NOT your harvest.
Now with everything, there are exceptions. If you feel that God has called you to bear with someone and love them to where they need to be, by all means, do not let me deter YOU from what the LORD told YOU to do. Also, do not consider this as a license to end your marriage. Except for certain circumstances (infidelity, abuse, danger, etc.), I do believe in sticking in there and FIGHTING for your marriage. But this is intended for those (particularly those who are unmarried) who know deep down that a relationship is not right and are having trouble accepting that their season has ended. Never be afraid to let go because you feel that you’ve put in too much effort. Unless you are reaping the FRUITS of that labor, AND that fruit is RIPE (mature), it may be time to reconsider. Yes, everything takes time, but even Jesus put a time limit on how long the fig tree had to bear fruit before He cursed it. If it has been months, years, decades, and still NO FRUIT or the fruit is STILL BITTER, it’s time to accept that this man, woman, etc. is NOT your harvest. You were simply a contribution to them becoming that harvest for someone else.
God promises us that we will REAP what we SOW. And even if we don’t reap it from the SAME person, when God blesses us with the RIGHT person, all of the labor and effort that we put in before will be WORTH IT.
I look at it like this: in love, we ALL must put in effort. Even if it doesn’t work out, we need not to become upset because somewhere, SOMEONE out there is putting in JUST AS MUCH as effort with the person that God has for YOU. God promises us that we will REAP what we SOW. And even if we don’t reap it from the SAME person, when God blesses us with the RIGHT person, all of the labor and effort that we put in before will be WORTH IT. Have faith. Trust God enough to believe that your labor is not in vain, and when you let go of the WRONG one, you can invest that energy into bringing the RIGHT harvest into fruition.