My son is a fruit appraiser. Grapes, blueberries, strawberries, bananas, apples. Before he consents to put one in his mouth, he will carefully evaluate it. Look at it from every angle. Smell it. Check for squishy parts.
Only after determining that it rises to his standards, will he eat it. Bananas are acceptable for about twelve minutes in their progress from green to brown. Blueberries and grapes have to be perfectly firm with no visible blemishes. Apples can’t be bruised.
In our house, Lucas gets the perfect produce, and all the rest of us eat the sad, blemished, castoffs. I think my son is a bit extreme, but his fruit evaluation reminds me of an important spiritual principle.
In Matthew 7, Jesus taught us how to evaluate spiritual teachers. He said, “You will know them by their fruit.” The principle is this: Looking at the fruit will tell you about the nature of the tree. What kind of tree is it? Is it healthy?
And I just have to say it… I’m looking around at the American church, at Christianity as it is showing up in culture today, and in far too many cases the fruit just isn’t beautiful, tasty or good.
Do you have that sense, too?