good roots good fruits
Something I ve believed in, by faith, for a long time now is that if you tend to the health of the roots, the fruit will grow naturally and healthy. I say by faith because the temptation is to get immediate results by setting up programs or ministries or codes of conduct that look like fruit. But they are usually plastic because they aren t real. They are often expressions of anxious concern for appearances, busy-ness, or effectiveness in the world. I m no longer into the manufacturing of plastic fruit. It is offensive to many because our church may consist of people who feel free not to appear religious or righteous if they are not. We as a church will not appear successful if we are not. We do not do things just because we are supposed to or expected to. We are not impressed with well-adorned Christmas-tree believers or churches. May the best decorated win! Instead, we are into fruit trees that bear fruit in and out of season.
So you wait and wait, believing that if the roots are healthy, good fruit will one day appear. It can take a long time. I was encouraged this week because there have been a couple of areas that I sensed would develop, that we as a church were going to do. This week, one man came forward to volunteer to operate the sound system and digital projection. Another woman, who s ministry is intercessory prayer, came forward to ask if she could start doing corporate intercession meetings for the church. Another woman came forward to volunteer to organize another ministry that is going to be very exciting and I ll tell you about soon. I could tell more stories. I m encouraged because these are genuine fruit that are emerging from the root of a genuine heart-felt desire to serve the Lord in the church and the world. It is Spirit-inspired. We could ve set up programs or ministries and picked people to operate them. But believe me, this is better because there is no coercion, no frustration, no resentment, and I believe, in the long-run, no unwarranted fatigue.