Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A Fruitful Vine

It can be very easy to slip into oblivion...I mean, who would know? Fighting with thoughts like this can be a daily struggle for caregivers. There's the aloneness that cannot really be described to those who do not understand. Besides the depression that can try to take hold there's a sense of barrenness that has to be fought...and it is indeed a fight of faith for many.

 Our trouble with thinking we are spiritually barren is tied up in the church's perception of fruit. Organized religion says that our fruit are all those things that we are doing inside the church. They consider teaching Sunday School, leading worship, helping with the church yard or cleaning the church to be fruit. Never mind that Jesus talked about none of these things when He talked about the sheep in Matthew 25. His sheep will visit the sick, and visit the prisoner, along with feeding the hungry. He didn't say that they attended Sunday School or Wednesday night Discipleship classes, did He?

 So what is the caregiver to do to bear fruit? By the church's standards we simply are not eligible and once again they deem us barren because we cannot function in their system. But that is because we tend to measure our fruit by what we do. While I agree that our fruit will display what's in our hearts - the caregiver is not barren.

 First of all consider this - you laid down your life to care for your loved one. If that's not a picture of Christ I don't know a better one! Our fruit is in the spirit, not the natural. And actually, we are blessed that the typical Pharisee cannot see our fruit, for if they can see it and measure it - trust me, it's not true spiritual fruit! Our fruit is being grown in the spirit realm. Just because religious people consider us barren - does not make it so!

 Isaiah 54:1 says this:

 Shout O barren one - you who have borne no child
break forth into joyful shouting and cry aloud 
you who have not travailed
For the sons of the desolate one 
are more numerous than the sons of the married woman!

When we develop our relationship with Him - that intimacy will produce much spiritual fruit! So relax. we are not barren! WE are a fruitful vine because we live in Him! 

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