The Fig Tree

Fig tree - with fruit!
Fig tree - with fruit!

The Amorphophallus titanium or giant corpse flower was predicted to bloom last week at the Cockrell Butterfly Center at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. The plant rose and appeared to ready to open then, nothing, disappointing hundreds of followers who wanted to catch a glimpse - and whiff - of the rare, malodorous flower.

The flower’s failure to produce reminds me of Mark 11:12-14 (NIV): “The next day as they were leaving Bethany, Jesus was hungry. Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to find out if it had any fruit. When he reached it he found nothing but leaves, because it was not the season for figs. Then he said to the tree, ‘May no one ever eat fruit from you again.’ And the disciples heard him say it.”

We as Christians need to be careful that we, too, are not full of leaves with no fruit. Do you have the appearance of a good Christian? Are you able to recite memorized Scripture, eloquently testify about the Lord’s presence in your life, willing to tell others about God’s grace? However, if someone takes a closer look, or even if you honestly self-examine, are you all leaves but no fruit? Would someone drawn to you ultimately leave disappointed because he or she discovered nothing of substance. Don’t just have the appearance, be a Christian. Don’t stop at the first step of accepting and believing the Lord is our Christ and Savior, walk in your faith. Show not just in words but also with actions that the Lord is first in your life. Don’t be like the cursed fig tree, tall, proud, and decked out in greenery but producing nothing. Faith without works is dead (James 2:20) as we discover in Mark 11: 20-21 (NIV): “In the morning, as they went along, they saw the fig tree withered from the roots. Peter remembered and said to Jesus, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree you cursed has withered!”

Live your life accordingly and with purpose so those who observe you from a distance will not curse you upon closer inspection.

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