Known By Our Fruit

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
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"A tree is identified by its fruit. If a tree is good, its fruit will be good. If a tree is bad, its fruit will be bad."

Matthew 12:33

Jesus used a familiar agricultural image to explain how the character of our life will produce either good or bad results. If we are a good "tree," then so will be our "fruit." On the contrary, if we are a bad "tree," then our "fruit" will follow suit. Jesus went on to explain that what's inside of us, either good or bad, will produce either good or bad on the outside.

If you want to check to see how you're doing in life, examine the fruit on your tree. The fruit of the kingdom of God may not be what we often value in today's world: popularity, wealth, physical attractiveness, career accomplishments, and so forth. Rather, the fruit that matters has to do with the lives of people being impacted by God. Kingdom fruit includes: people experiencing the grace of God, colleagues receiving an unexpected word of kindness, families mended through the healing of the Spirit, institutions shaped according to God's justice, and righteousness.

QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: Take some time to reflect on the "fruit" of your life. Are you bearing the fruit of the kingdom? In what areas of life? Are there contexts where you are living less fruitfully? If so, why not talk with the Lord about these, asking for his wisdom and direction?

PRAYER: Gracious Lord, when I read this text, I yearn to live a fruitful life, a life that produces the fruit of your kingdom. May this be true of me.

I realize, however, that I cannot bear kingdom fruit on my own. I will only be genuinely fruitful in this life if my roots grow deeply into you and your truth. You alone can provide the nutrients of the kingdom. So, help me, Lord, to be like a tree planted along the riverbank, fruitful in its season because its roots are nourished by the river. Be that river for me, Lord! Amen.