Home christian living Don’t Hang Fruit on a Dead Tree

Don’t Hang Fruit on a Dead Tree

by Kelly Crawford

The things we do, the lifestyle choices we make the “works”–it’s all fruit on the tree of our spiritual lives. It’s important that we understand fruit…

If I go outside and find a dead tree, carry a basket of apples and clothespins and leaves, I can clip the fruit and leaves on and make it look beautiful.  But the tree is still just as dead.

I might can convince others, for a time, that the tree is alive and thriving, but the tree is still dead, and in due time, the fruit will become rotten and reveal the truth.

But if I go and plant a fruit tree in good soil, water it and cultivate it, focusing on its roots, the tree will thrive and fruit will grow–naturally, without any effort.  The deeper the roots grow and the stronger the tree’s life source, the more prolific and healthy the fruit.

So it is with us.  We can do all the right things, but if we’re only focused on the “things”, we’re clipping fruit onto a dead tree.  Our focus must be on the roots–our Power Source–the Lord Jesus.

When we cultivate a deep and abiding love for Him, fruit naturally grows out of that.  When we truly “seek first the Kingdom”, the fruit will be added.  When we “cry aloud for wisdom so we can understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God”, our lives cannot help but bear “good works”–the real, living kind.

Let us dig deep our roots and cultivate our spiritual lives by the power of the One Who gives life.

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Mrs. B November 2, 2010 - 11:16 pm

Thanks, Word Warrior!
Needed that today.

I Live in an Antbed November 2, 2010 - 11:38 pm

Yes!! It is so easy to be distracted by things that don’t really matter. May we be still and know that He is God. He so Faithfully blesses our smallest steps of obedience. And to see the fruit He is bringing forth in the lives of my children makes my heart feel like it will burst!

Kelly L November 3, 2010 - 12:55 am

Jesus IS Lord….

Kim M November 3, 2010 - 3:56 am

Very good, Kelly! I shared on facebook.

Ruth Adams November 3, 2010 - 6:56 am

So True. As Nancy Leigh DeMoss said, “We must be tethered to the Word of God.” Great post!

Diane November 3, 2010 - 7:39 am

Amen Kelly. I especially liked this part: “I might can convince others, for a time, that the tree is alive and thriving, but the tree is still dead, and in due time, the fruit will become rotten and reveal the truth.”

And you know, I truly didn’t come over here this morning to convince you to visit me, truly I didn’t! but your post seems so closely related to my own this morning, I just have to share (do you mind?) I recently had a friend email me about a concern she had for her daughter, who she felt might not have a “real” faith…. I’m asking for thoughts and input on my blog today. I’d love to hear yours, if you’d care to share♥

Charity November 3, 2010 - 8:17 am

Awesome! Awessome! You have such a way with words. Thank you for this.

Beth November 3, 2010 - 8:31 am

This was beautiful. Thank you. 🙂

heather c November 3, 2010 - 9:24 am

Thank you! I will be sharing this with my kids. Just this morning I had a talk with my son about grades and behavior. I asked him “why” he should be doing better in both. His response was “to get privaledges back”, I said, “No. Because we are to do everything as if we are doing it first for the Lord”. Your post today more elloquintly explains my point!

Mrs. S November 3, 2010 - 10:04 am

I love your analogy!

You can’t grow fruits of the Spirit in the flesh, only by clinging to the Lord will they be truly cultivated in your life.

Mrs. Santos November 3, 2010 - 4:43 pm

So true, and what a good analogy. I love it. It also makes me think of a quote I recently read:

“God never places us in any position in which we can not grow. We may fancy that He does. We may fear we are so impeded by fretting, petty cares that we are gaining nothing; but when we are not sending any branches upward, we may be sending roots downward. Perhaps in the time of our humiliation, when everything seems a failure, we are making the best kind of progress.’

Elizabeth Prentiss,

Kristen November 3, 2010 - 4:57 pm

I was convicted of this idea this very weekend. We were interviewing a candidate for our pulpit and he was talking about Justification and Sanctification. He said that we trust in the grace of God for our Justification, but so many of us rely on our own works to sanctify us and we all know how much our own works are worth…. Anyhow, he really challenged us to live out our sanctification by that same Grace that saved us. I’ve been really studying Psalm 119 in light of that this week “… having my eyes fixed on all y our commandments” (and not on my circumstances, my shortcomings, my feeble attempts at righteousness) and also delighting in the law of the Lord and what that really means!

Kelly L November 3, 2010 - 6:46 pm

Please forgive me for my horrible rant on your blog, Kelly. Please erase it!!! Gosh, you’d think I’d listen to myself when I remind my daughter that we are not to be ruled by our emotions. The parable I give the most when hearing people say nasty things is “Even a fool is thought wise when he keeps his mouth closed.”
WOW! Wish I would have remembered that last night. I am embarrassed!

Devina November 3, 2010 - 7:10 pm

Great post! It gave me goosebumps as I read it.

terry@breathing grace November 4, 2010 - 1:33 pm

This was very well said, Kelly. And so important.

Bethany Hudson November 4, 2010 - 3:20 pm

Great analogy. Great reminder. Thanks 🙂

Kim M March 1, 2012 - 1:52 pm



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