I love the different seasons in nature. The cold, icy grip of winter, the fresh start of spring, the heat and longer days of summer, and the falling leaves of autumn. All these are according to God’s plan for our good and the cycle of life that He set in place.
I have come to realize that there are and will continue to be seasons of life that each of us experience personally. Whether it be raising kids, various employment opportunities, friendships, or surroundings, seasons have one thing in common . . . they are marked by change.
God desires change in all His children.In 2 Peter 3:18, Peter challenges the believers,
“But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.”
The word “knowledge” does not simply mean to know about Jesus, but it implies having a deep, intimate relationship with Him. This takes action on our part to get to know Him better through His Word.
Jesus stated in John 15:8,
“Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.”
Fruit never occurs on apple trees without there being change.
I remember growing up back on the farm in Indiana, Dad had the idea of planting an orchard. It was a pretty awesome learning experience picking out the different varieties, planning the layout, and researching how to plant them. So much went into those trees to ensure they not only survived, but thrived. I remember the hot summers filling up the huge water tank and pulling it through the orchard watering every tree. I think we only had 30-40, but it sure felt like a whole lot more!
These fruit trees are most productive when they are dormant through the winter months and then pruned and fertilized to then burst into bud and bloom in the spring to be pollinated and begin growing fruit that matures into the fall harvest. Jesus painted this picture in a practical, easy to understand analogy for anyone to grasp. Yet somehow, I find this practical truth a challenge to apply.
It’s easy for me to get set in my ways (I am finding that out the older I grow =). Change means that I have to be vulnerable and ask myself what areas of my life need pruning and what things need to grow in order for fruit to abound.
I believe a Christian is most fruitful when they allow God’s grace to motivate them, and then take steps and make changes in their life to do His perfect will. It’s not always easy, but it’s best, and ultimately God is glorified.
So as you watch the last leaves fall from the trees, or you notice the nights getting longer and the temperatures getting cooler, remember God’s plan for change is not just in nature, but in you.