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Real Faith is Personal - Not Private

Jesus said that people were like trees, you could tell good from bad based on their fruit. Sunday we finished up our series "Back to Basics" where we've explored what it takes to produce good fruit in our lives. Good fruit is produced by good roots. The roots are unseen and personal to the tree. They silently draw up from the ground water and nutrients essential to producing fruit. The fruit is the public product of the unseen or personal work of the tree.

A healthy tree has healthy roots that produces healthy fruit. If the fruit is bad then it's likely a problem with the roots which need to be fed by watering or fertilizing. If that doesn't work then the tree needs to be cut down because it refuses to produce. The same is true with many Christians. They come to church to be fed but then refuse to produce the fruits of godliness like love, forgiveness, kindness, mercy, generosity, and patience. Trees with roots and no fruit are nothing more than stumps, thankfully God has called us to more than this!

There is one other, rarer, type of disorder of a tree that produces fruit but has no life in it. When I lived in California I drove past a grove of orange trees that had been sold to a developer. These trees were no longer watered but in one last act produced fruit. This was the last act of a dying tree and thankfully God has called to more than this also.

Psalm 1 describes a healthy life with God. David writes about the faithful, describing them as trees in Psalm 1:1-3 (NIV).
         Blessed is the one 
         who does not walk in step with the wicked 
         or stand in the way that sinners take 
         or sit in the company of mockers, 
         but whose delight is in the law of the LORD, 
         and who meditates on his law day and night. 
         That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, 
         which yields its fruit in season 
         and whose leaf does not wither— 
         whatever they do prospers. 

Notice the source of the nutrients for the believer come through being connected to God through his law or word. This is why daily Bible reading is so important. If you need a little help with getting connected to God through his word then you might want to try my weekly reading plan.