One of our favorite parts of the life cycle of a plant is its FRUIT. It’s what has finally come out of the whole process of planting, waiting, rooting, sprouting, growing, and flowering (among other pieces!). It is the celebration of the hard work of growing, the enjoyment of the fruits of our labor (whether we are the planters or the plant, in this picture!). It’s one of Scripture’s favorite images, too—Jesus is often referring to fruit (and the lack of fruit where there *should* be fruit). The writers of the Epistles often use the image of “firstfruits”—which has a long history in the Torah and the experience of the Jewish people. And we think, too, of the “fruit” of the Spirit: when the life of God has been living in us, nurturing our inner growth, the ways it gets lived out in the world are called “fruit”. And, wow, is fruit delicious! When it’s had a chance to ripen perfectly, it is one of the great delights of nature to enjoy the taste of the fruit that has emerged from the vine or tree or other plant! Consider what “fruit” is in your life right now. Not (as we tend to do) as a way to judge yourself, weighing whether you’re living up to the fruit you’d expect from a life lived with God; but as a way of noticing (and celebrating!) these things that have simply emerged naturally in the process of maturation and living. What sweetness do you taste in your life? What fruit, the whole process begun by the seeds of some past season, is ripening now, offering you (and others!) nourishment in this season? What are you surprised to discover God has been up to in you? Is the fruit different than you’d expected—perhaps like raspberries instead of oranges, or watermelon instead of figs? Both good and beautiful and delicious things, but maybe different in some way from what you’d imagined for yourself? Spend some time with God today, reveling in the fruit that has been birthed in your own process, mirroring life in the green and growing world around you.

Posted by Jamie Bonilla at 2023-04-28 14:12:27 UTC