I have been thinking a great deal about fruit the last several weeks. In an attempt to qualify my life and life's work, I figured the only way Jesus seemed to qualify things was by the fruit of the person's life and by the person's simple obedience to the Father... that is, to live in harmony with God in pure surrender.
Fruit cannot be forced. It simply grows from a healthy tree. Where there is unhealth, you will have bad fruit.
I have been evaluating the amount of fruit my life has produced. How many people's lives are better for having known me? How many people would call me a bringer of positivity or of God's goodness? Do people want to bear the quality/kind of fruit that I am bearing? Or do they see my fruit as bitter and bruised? Would others like to be planted in my shade or stay far away from my end of the forest?
Okay, perhaps I am taking this a little too far. But the point is is that I have been thinking about fruit as a measuring of success lately.
I have also been thinking about mirrors. How they reveal how we look, who we are.
People can be mirrors, you know? Marriage has shown me that. Who can show you better who you are than the person you spend 24/7 with?
As with mirrors, people can reveal the best and worst of me. When Holly is at her best, it reminds me of what it's like to be at my best, in my sweet-spot. When Holly is sad, it reminds me of the chambers of grief in my own heart (or the callous of my heart). When Holly irritates me (now this is very seldom!), it is usually because the same things that I dislike about myself, I dislike seeing in others. Does this make sense?
And so I begin looking at how others live their own lives, what kind of fruit they are bearing, and I let them mirror me if possible. What can they remind me about myself? Which directions to go, which directions not to go, etc.
Now of course, different trees produce different fruits and some mirrors are like the ones you find in a funhouse, but a good look around you might show you a little something about yourself... or it's at least showing me a bit about myself.