“Every good tree bears good fruit, and a rotten tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a rotten tree bear good fruit.” Many of us have probably heard or even used the expression, “money doesn’t grow on trees.” While being a bit comical, there are several meanings nestled behind it. The first and foremost meaning should be clear: money must be earned and does not come freely, as do the leaves on any given tree or shrub. Typically, this idiom describes the idea that someone should be careful about how they spend their money. This phrase relates to the fact that trees often produce fruit for people to enjoy—regardless of whether or not the people cultivate these trees. This contrasts with the idea that money must be worked for with effort and is never given without reason.
“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but underneath are ravenous wolves.” Sometimes our vision for ourselves falls short of what is actually going on in our lives. At times our perspective on the world around us becomes bitter, and thus our actions and words become rude, unkind, and thoughtless with numbing regularity. We mistakenly think there is no good fruit to be found, but the real truth lies in the fact that we haven’t spent enough quality time with our beautiful and loving God. When we allow ourselves the time to realize how great our God is, we begin to see and bear good fruit. Then and only then does it become much easier to choose gratitude over a complaint. Furthermore, at the heart of the battle for our souls is a real enemy who prowls around seeking someone to devour. Evil will never stop gaining new ground and moving others away from the Lord. This is another reason why we must be aware of those who just “talk the talk.”
“Be patient. God is using today’s difficulties to strengthen you for tomorrow. He is equipping you. The God who makes things grow will help you bear fruit.” Max Lucado