Psalms 34:8 O’ come taste and see that the Lord is good.
We planted our fig tree a few years ago. Unlike other fruit trees, the fig can be planted singularly. Thus, we have only one fig tree. We planted it in memory of our friend Celeste; this fig tree bears the same name. Thus, my referring to the fruit as celestial figs.
Our tree didn’t produce fruit the first year because it was too young. The second year it produced a few. The next couple of years a good crop.
We had a harsh winter in our area and most people lost their fig trees or at thought they had. If they were lucky, they had to severely prune their trees, forgoing fruit this year, and allow their trees to recover. We were blessed because we have so many pine trees. These trees sheltered and protected our fig tree. In contrast to other fig trees in our area, ours flourished. In fact, it grew! It is now towering well over eight feet tall.
Reading articles about others’ loss and the pruning process, I have learned that our tree is big; too big. We have let it get too tall and we need to prune it. However, it cannot be pruned until after it finishes bearing fruit.
Each day I go out to look for ripe figs. Today, I needed my husband to get the ladder and assist me in getting the figs that were ripe near the top of the tree. We have never had to use a ladder before. I would look and point and he would pick and hand them to me. There are always those that ripen before we can pick them. The birds and ants had started to eat them and they were rotting. Those I had to pluck and throw into the compost bin. Most of the figs are not as big or as sweet as last year. That’s due to the tree needing to be pruned. The pruning will make the tree healthier and produce better fruit next year.
This story of my fig tree reminds me so much of how God works in our lives. He has a singular relationship with each of us. It is not dependent upon anyone or anything for us to have this relationship. In addition, there is no hierarchy in God’s kingdom, he loves us all the same and sent his son for each of us. Like my fig tree, God has planted fruits in each of us. These fruits take time to grow and ripen, but if not used/shared, they too will rot on the vine. Yet, when picked and used for his glory they are so sweet. We too need pruning to help us grow and be more fruitful. This may seem painful and leave us feeling shorn and vulnerable. Yet, this will make us stronger.
Today I picked some figs. I brought my harvest inside and washed them off. I plucked one from the bowl; so fresh, so sweet.
I pray the Lord finds my fruit as pleasing.
John 15:2 Every branch in me that bears not fruit he takes away, and every branch that bears fruit, he prunes, that it may bring forth more fruit.