I know I have said it before, but we are an odd breed. I know that we are created in God’s image, but I’m also certain that our insecurities are not grounded in Him. We are complex in all the awkward ways and want simplicity where God’s ways are higher than ours. Let me explain to you what I’m talking about.
I have had several conversations lately with people who want to step out in faith, but they have hit a brick wall. The wall isn’t insecurity. They have dealt with that. It isn’t doubt in God’s goodness either. He has proved that. It isn’t even because of a lack of knowing Scripture, because that has been the root of their deepening passion. The issue is pretty simple: they don’t want to be misunderstood.
In my life, this has been one of the most painful things I have encountered. I can’t think of anything as crippling as having someone see what you intend to be an act of dependence on God and think that you are making everything about yourself. This can take you out at the knees. It’s discouraging and disheartening. Sure, sometimes we are acting arrogantly. Sometimes we are being selfish. Other times we are just finally deciding to put our faith in action and believe what God says about us.
When we look at our lives, I think all of us want to leave a lasting legacy. We want our lives to count. We all want the fruit of our lives to be good. Some days we won’t settle for anything less.
"For no good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does a bad tree bear good fruit, for each tree is known by its own fruit.”
Let me get straight to the point. Good fruit doesn’t come from bad trees. It only comes from good trees. You can’t have a nasty, infested apple tree produce anything that is worthwhile. For good fruit to emerge, the tree must be good. Now, we know that nothing but God is good. This must mean that you are made “good” through Him. When we believe this reality, then it is true. Once you see the fruit you can’t deny the work that God has done.
Is it arrogant to say you’ve become a “good tree?” Absolutely not! It’s one of the most humbling statements you could make. On your own you would have awful little globs of worthlessness as your fruit. The beauty is you are not left on your own. You have been given a Savior. God made the choice that faith would be the way of being restored in His image, and when He made mankind He called it good. You believe in Christ as your Savior, and you are new. He doesn’t make you new and nasty, but new and good. Then the fruit of your life will be good as well.
Sometimes I don’t like to tell people of what God is doing because I don’t want them staring at me, the tree. I don’t want them to be distracted by me, so I just don’t talk. At that moment I waste the fruit. The reality is no one cares to see the tree. They admire the fruit. And if every once and a while someone mistakenly thinks I’m trying to get everyone to look at the tree, well, I guess it’s worth it for the fruit.