one of my favorite verses in the bible is jeremiah 17:7-8…
Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is in the Lord. He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought for it does not cease to bear fruit.
i wanted to be the person that no matter life’s circumstances i was trusting God with them. i wanted to be continually bearing fruit and always green. i wanted to go, go, go.
but it struck me as i was meditating on scripture earlier this week that the natural process is there are seasons with no fruit. there are seasons of winter and death. it isn’t a negative thing. here’s what i mean. if there is never a time of recovery or preparation or even death, it kills the plant, land, person, etc.
look at the fields. every seventh year, God told the people to give the land rest. because in so doing, it replenished itself and prepared for the next six.
look at animals that hibernate. they sleep and slow their metabolism because food is scare. if there wasn’t a “fruitless” season, they would likely die for lack of food.
look at trees. trees naturally produce fruit typically in spring and then as winter comes, they become dormant so they can replenish.
what freedom comes with that!! in thinking of this topic i am also reminded of john 12:24
Truly, truly I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone, but if it dies , bears much fruit.
so life will have seasons of death and fruitlessness. and it is GOOD. just because something appears negative doesn’t mean that it is. i am not saying every negative season is good, by no means! i do see, however, in my life where i have been so hard on myself (something i still work on) because it doesn’t look like i am doing anything. when i look back later in the journey i see, however, that so much life came from that season.
take for example, when i moved to oklahoma city, i moved to work with a nonprofit. loved/love them! they couldn’t afford to pay me so i got a part time job. i moved in with some new girl friends. it was a season of being a barista and making $500 a month. there was no fruit in my life. i was not successful in work. there was nothing remarkable about the season. in fact, often i told the Lord how bored i was. and He told me to rest. you see i had just come off of 4 years of intense work as a graphic designer for a large church. this season was beautiful in hindsight. i cleaned the area, made people coffee, had a lunch rush and read a ton of books! but in the middle of it all i saw was how fruitless it felt…thank God for the season of rest because it shortly thereafter picked back up.
i find myself in the “bored” place again. i do the same thing day in and day out. my soul longs for adventure, whatever that may be. my soul longs to do what He is doing. how comforting it is to rest in the fact that He knows when winter needs to come and when to bring spring.
take a look at your life. is life fruitless right now? does it feel like something is dying? is it the Lord or your own doing? i know i like to assume i am doing something wrong when nothing is happening and nothing is progressing but sometimes, it is right where i need to be for the next round of fruit to grow.
if you don’t know, ask God to show you if it is Him or if it is you. if it is Him, we can rest in the fact that He is completely aware and able to move us into “spring” again. i think what i love about trees is they just ‘know’. obviously God tells them how high to grow and where to start growing limbs and what kind of fruit to produce. if He can do that in trees, how much in our bodies and lives which are made in His image!
if it is a fruitless season because you are lacking in the fruit of the Spirit, invite Him to work in you. to convince you of who He is. in the presence of God’s love, we are transformed but if we refuse to receive it, He will not force it.