Blessed…. Good Tree, Good Fruit

“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you dressed like sheep, but inside they are vicious wolves. You will know them by their fruit. Do people get bunches of grapes from thorny weeds, or do they get figs from thistles? In the same way, every good tree produces good fruit, and every rotten tree produces bad fruit. A good tree can’t produce bad fruit. And a rotten tree can’t produce good fruit. Every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit is chopped down and thrown into the fire. Therefore, you will know them by their fruit” (Matthew 7:15-20, Common English Bible).

When I was a kid my dad had a couple of pecan trees that grew in our backyard.`My dad loved those trees and he worked hard at keeping them healthy. It seems, at least in my memory that he was always spraying those trees to get the web worms out. They always seemed to be invading his pecan trees. But, when those trees started producing pecans, they were really, really good nuts (I also remember that my dad knew how much work they were. When we moved into a different house, he never again had a pecan tree in the yard). I don’t remember ever eating a pecan from those trees that didn’t taste good.

At some point in my past, I can’t really remember when, I was also in the vicinity of another pecan tree, very different from either of my dad’s pecan trees. Every nut I ever tried from that tree was horribly bitter. They just didn’t taste good at all. I don’t think that tree was capable of producing a good pecan. Other trees around that one produced good pecans, but everything from that tree was bad.

When I read our lesson for today I think back on those pecan trees. Two of the trees produced nothing but a good crop. That other tree, however, was incapable of producing a pecan anyone would want to put in their mouth.

I don’t know enough about pecans and pecan trees to know whether or not a pecan from that awful tree would produce a tree that had good pecans or not. If it would there might have been a reason to keep it growing. But if a bad pecan produced trees that produced bad pecans, you might as well cut it down. All that tree did was take up space.

Jesus uses the analogy of fruit and fruit trees to point to us and how we produce fruit. He says, in essence, good folks produce good folks. Bad people produce bad people. But, as I think about it, all of us are sinners who fall short of the glory of God. That means we are all bad people. The big difference between us and that bad pecan tree is, God will change us. Through God’s grace we can find forgiveness and find our direction through the power of the Holy Spirit. The tree will continue to produce bad pecans. God can change us, to produce good fruit. That my friends, is good news for all of us!

What kind of fruit do you produce?

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy, Peace and Thanksgiving,

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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