“Then he told this parable: A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came looking for fruit on it and found none. So he said to the gardener, ‘See here! For three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree, and still I find none. Cut it down! Why should it be wasting the soil?’ He replied, ‘Sir, let it alone for one more year, until I dig around it and put manure on it. If it bears fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.’” – Luke 13:6-9
I am not a gardener. But I know for something to grow it must be fed, watered, and nurtured. It is a rare plant that flourishes without these important things. As it is with people.
As humans, we cannot survive without food and water and we cannot flourish without being nurtured. We have to do the hard work of pruning away the broken parts so that the good within is able to flower. We have to be open to God’s nourishment so that we can grow- and sometimes that means dealing with a lot of manure! But this is the work we are called to do, especially in this season of Lent.
During this season of the Christian year, we reflect on the many reasons that Christ came among us and we give thanks that he intercedes on our behalf, constantly working with us- digging where things need to be dug up, and pouring manure where it’s needed- so that one day soon, we may all see the fruit that results.
Lord, We open our souls to you. Prune away the darkness that does not produce heavenly fruit and nourish us where needed so that all may see the results of your work within us. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Heather Locklear is the pastor of Lea’s Chapel UMC