1 Timothy 1: 15-17
Luke 6: 43-49


Summer breezes descend as the sun rays glimmer over the land. Reaching out to bite into that summer peach, juices overflow, and flavour dances on the tongue enough to make you gasp. With each bite overriding everything of a mixture of complex flavours, both floral and fruity, so mouth-filling they seem almost meaty. A flow of nostalgia the fruit is so ripe the juices drip down your chin; so ripe the peach practically peels itself!!

Today we hear Jesus making a statement that is fairly obvious! It doesn’t require much explanation. If you want good fruit to be produced from your life, it is going to take exactly the same sort of hard work. Good fruit from a follower of Jesus is no accident.

As our seasons change and the spring appears, peaches remind me that to get fruit like this is not an accident of nature. It takes a gifted farmer, a lot of hard work and a refusal to compromise, and I would add some Hawkes Bay soil, too!

A few years ago, I was really taken by the message “You are what you eat.” As if this is true, it is truer that you are what you say. Your words reveal your heart. Every word that proceeds from our mouths is like a choice piece of fruit. Each word is a gem, carefully chosen, spoken with love. It is flavoured with grace and truth, with love and respect that sometimes it seems as if Jesus Himself is speaking through that person.

There are so many lessons to learn from orchards. Surprising lessons. I recently read that fruit experts expressed that when a tree is full of lush foliage, it indicates lots of nitrogen, which results in sour fruit. One method to prevent this is to purposefully plant certain weeds around trees to let them grow as much as they want; this way, it will eliminate the nitrogen and leave behind a special blend of nutrients perfect for fruit growing.

The invitation for today is to pause and reflect on how we can develop this kind of fruit in our lives? How do we cultivate our hearts so that only sweet and choice words proceed from our lips? And you know those weeds in your life? Those things that test your patience? Lack of resources? Sickness? Stressful situations? God, the orchard expert, has got you covered, they are to strengthen you using up the bad nutrients in the ground where they are planted and leaving better ones behind, like love, patience and joy! 

Sr Karen Englebretsen CP, Cross and Passion Sisters. blessed to be a spiritual care worker in the homeless sector in Melbourne.