Can you guess what season it is :)? What a fun time of year! Lucas, Jewel and I went strawberry picking this morning and picked 20 pounds (exactly *sigh*... I made sure of that... measuring bucket by bucket, relocating strawberry by strawberry to a different bucket when we were one ounce too high...) of yummy, juicy berries. 10 of the pounds were for a friend to help replace the ones her little (I stress: little) daughters had so graciously taken care of for her (while she was sleeping, they somehow managed to eat 10 of her 16 pounds; If they're not careful they'll have 3 little... or maybe big... strawberries for daughters.) What I really wanted to share with you, though, was not the business of our yummy morning, but some of what the Bible has to say about a different kind of fruit: "...love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: ..." (Galations 5:22-23) since the abundance and purity of these 'fruits' in our lives are the evidence of the strength we have in our walk with Jesus Christ. I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit. Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. Herein is my Father glorified,
that ye bear much fruit;
Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore
by their fruits ye shall know them.