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Little Sour Apples
by Brenda Emmons
03/29/12
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“A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit…Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.” Matthew 7:17-18.

When I was a little girl I was only a bicycle ride away from a church that had apple trees growing on its property. Instead of the luscious grocery store apples hanging on the branches, small sour green apples with little brown spots hung. I can still remember jumping off my bike as it was still moving and scurrying up the big trunk. Every time, my expectation was hopeful only to be disappointed by the bitter and sour taste. Why in the world did I think that climbing the same tree and eating the same fruit would produce a different experience? It wasn’t the tree’s fault…it had a specific root that grew specific fruit.

Every emotion and attitude that hang in our hearts, blossom and ripen from a root that we have nourished. If we have a root of insecurity, our fruit tastes of defensiveness and hypersensitive responses. If we have a root of unforgiveness, our fruit tastes of bitterness and judgmental attitudes. If we are rooted in Christ, our fruit will tastes of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness and self-control. (Gal 5:22) We have the opportunity for our trees to grow emotional fruit or spiritual fruit. If our fruit tastes like the grace of God, many will come to nourish their lives. However, if our fruit resembles sour apples, we will not be a part of sharing the grace of God. ‘See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.’ Heb. 12:15.

We are told in Romans 11:18 to consider that ‘we do not support the root, but the root supports us.’ When we give up the poisonous roots of our hearts and allow the root of Christ to dominate our lives we will share the beautiful and ripened fruit of God’s orchard. We are all bearers of fruit in God’s field but will emotional or spiritual fruit hang at the end of our branches?

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