How are you recognized?

July 26, 2018

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Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living

Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
(Matthew 7:20 (NIV))

Have you ever seen an apple tree bear peaches? Have you ever seen an orange tree bear bananas? In the physical world, if we ever saw anything like this, we would think that we have gone utterly insane. These types of things just don’t happen. We are so used to seeing things a certain way that we know that certain things will never happen. Matthew understood this. He even took this concept one step further and explained that good fruit does not come from plants that we know to be bad. He referenced plants that most people cut down, dig up or burn. How could anything good ever come from something like this?

By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.
(Matthew 7:16-18 (NIV))

The very same concept is also true in the spiritual as well. It seems as if everyone knows one or two people who just can’t seem to do anything good. Their whole demeanor just ruminates with a foreboding sense that is not comfortable to be around. They display everything that is opposite of the fruit that we are told is good.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
(Galatians 5:22-23a (NIV))

Fruit is the means of reproducing in kind the very thing that produced the fruit. It carries the seed that will grow another plant like the one that it came from. When we think of fruit in the physical world, we think of something that is sweet and succulent to eat. Think of this in terms of the fruit of the Spirit. When we partake of the fruit of the Spirit, we soon begin to grow and mature with that very fruit becoming evident in our lives. The more love, joy and peace that you partake of, the more love, joy and peace that you bear.

Take a serious look at your life. Do you produce love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control, or do you produce something completely different? How do you think that others see what you produce?

How are you recognized?

Copyright 1998 – 2018 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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How strong are your roots?

October 20, 2015

Be Still . . .
Devotionals for Daily Living
 ©

All men are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord stands forever.
(1 Peter 1:24-25 (NIV))

God tells us that we are like grass. We are here for a short time and then we are gone. We will be cut down and cast away just like the grass under our lawn mowers. Only God and His Word last forever. It is unchanging and constant. It is truth when all around us is a lie. It has depth.

Have you ever looked at the roots of grass? They are shallow. It is easy to pull up grass if you get a good hold on it. Sometimes it breaks. Sometimes it gets pulled up. Either way, it does not last. Consider the roots again. Some grass, even though it has shallow roots, sends out its roots in all directions so that they intertwine with the roots of other grass, giving it strength. If we are grass, then we should send out our roots of faith to other believers so that we can have the strength to withstand the times when we will wither. A single blade of grass is easy to destroy. A well manicured lawn takes more to destroy it.

Perhaps we should think of the church as the lawn. We, as the Body of Christ, get and give strength to an from each other. All men are like grass, but we have a choice as to the type and location of our planting and maturing. If we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior and feed on the Word of God and spread out our roots to one another, then when our physical aspects wither, our spiritual aspects will be allowed to exist with God forever.

How are your roots? Do they help support others or do they have trouble supporting you?

Copyright 1998 – 2015 Dennis J. Smock
Daily Living Ministries, Inc.
http://www.dailylivingministries.org
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