Up the highway from where I live is a place very well known for its produce – Apple Hill. People come from miles around, sometimes driving over 3 hours to visit. Why? Because in the fall, you can have a really good time visiting. There are craft vendors with homemade decorations, dolls, and knick-knacks. There are pony rides, pumpkins, and walking trails. But best of all, there is the food! The produce of Apple Hill is fantastic! There are fresh boxes of apples to purchase and bring home. There are craft beers and excellent wines to try. There are barbecues with chicken, pork, and beef.
Perhaps the most enjoyed foods are the apple desserts. To bite into a fresh apple donut is an experience worthy repeating – again and again! One can delve into an apple fritter, delight in a blackberry dumpling, or sample a delicious piece of apple pie! It’s all really good! (I’m hungry now just thinking of it!)
It wouldn’t work without the apple orchards, however. The trees need to be fertilized, watered, pruned, and protected from insects in order to have a good crop. The farmers have to cultivate their orchards in order to have a harvest, and I am thankful for them every time I eat a fresh apple donut!
That’s also how it works with God’s people. Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). For us to be fruitful, we need to be cultivated. We need to be connected to Jesus in and through His Word, the Bible. As we prayerfully and thoughtfully read His Words, they sink into our hearts, minds, and spirits. Jesus cultivates us, He shapes and molds the way we think about things, the way we react to people and events. He leads us to bear fruit.
We need Jesus if we are going to be strong, if we are going to bear fruit. We need to be cultivated in His Word. Please take advantage of a Bible class with other Christians. Please take time each day for a few minutes with the Lord, and let Him cultivate you. He will bear a harvest in your life.
“If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit.”