Sometimes You Need A Little Manure
I grew up doing a lot of farm work. We had a mini farm, raising cattle, hay and tobacco. When a lot of kids might have been having fun, I was busy working. One job was especially messy.
With a shovel and pitchfork, I had the privilege of getting to clean the barn out. A few years worth of layers of waste and hay and hay and waste were scooped into a manure spreader. Then we fertilized the fields with it.
I thought of that in church Sunday. Yes, that’s right, I thought of manure while the preacher was preaching. Keep any snide comments to yourself.
Our pastor talking about the parable of the barren fig tree. In this story, Jesus is talking about a fig tree. A man has come to it three years in a row without finding any fruit. He told the vine dresser to cut it down since it was taking up valuable real estate. Instead the vine dresser said to give it year. He wanted to tend to it, cultivate it and put manure on it. If it didn’t produce during the next year, then it would be time to cut it down.
I realized that barren fig tree could be me.
When I look at my life, I might not be producing fruit.
It could be in my faith. My family. My physical life. My finances.
You name it and I could be barren.
It would be easy to quit. To just go to chopping until that area of my life is hacked out. That might not be the thing to do though.
Those areas of life might just need a little care. They might need some cultivation. They might need some manure.
Quitting, like I said, would be easy. It’s over and done quickly. However, deciding to work on life and fertilize it takes some effort. It might take some labor.
And it just might be worth it when the fruit begins to show.
Have you ever been a barren fig tree? What did you do to begin producing fruit?