Across the street from where I live there is a big apple tree. Every Fall the tree would be full of ripe juicy apples. To pick the fruit and then put it to use in making apple pies and other creations puts a smile on everyone face as well as those extra pounds resulting from over appreciation. Sometime ago the property changed ownership. The new proprietors did not care for apples and as a result the apples struggled to mature due to neglect. When harvest time arrived the apples simply fell to the ground with worm holes, blemishes and decay. One of the places that we camped this summer was filled with new trees. Every week a person would drive around with hoses which they would hook up to water supplies and then stick a watering rod in the ground around each tree and water them for about twenty minutes. A good foundation of watered soil gave the trees the opportunity to grow big and strong.
Jesus talked about how a tree is “known” by its fruit. He could tell if a tree had been taken care or neglected. He could look at the fruit and know what kind “caretaker” was behind the harvesting tree. Jesus used the simple illustration of trees to compare with what people produce or fail to produce in their lives. In Matthew 12:33 He commanded to “Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or else make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for a tree in known by its fruit.” Believers are to take the Word and water the roots of their faith. The result of their labor will cause people to see their fruit and will be drawn to the Kingdom harvest. If we neglect to feed our faith with the Word, our fruit will lack appeal. Jesus was stressing that if Believers are not making the effort to grow and produce, they are in effect doing just the opposite. What comes out of our mouth reflexes the basics of our faith. Our words are the audible evidence of what is in our hearts. Jesus said that “by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” (Matthew 12:37)
Jesus also talked about the “treasures” of the heart. In every persons heart there are compartments that store things that can be identified with the spiritual condition of that person. Feeding the heart with “good things” will reflect what comes out of the mouth. The opposite is also true. If we feed the heart with the things of the world, the mouth will express the negative. (Matthew 12:35) What comes out of the mouth is usually a revealing of what is within the person. Jesus calls this into record when He says that every “idle word” that we speak will be accounted for on Judgement day. (Matthew 12:36) Every day we should take a vocabulary test. What that consists of is listing the words that do not exemplify the Believers dictionary. At the end of the day we need to grade our verbiage and ask God for forgiveness for those “idle words.”
Last week I had a tooth extracted. It was not exactly a pleasant experience, but it was something that had to be done. By getting rid of the decayed tooth, there would be a return to a form of normality. It is not always pleasant to deal with the consequences of sin, but when it is addressed and dealt with the results are so satisfying.
Uncap the Word and pour it on the foundation of your faith. As you do your fruit market will flourish with abundance.