PB bought an orange tree — it even came in an orange pot. He brought it home and set it on the deck, tag and all. The next morning he got up, opened the blinds and looked out the window to behold a miracle. Oranges! Big, juicy, shiny oranges. What an amazing plant!
It’s hard to admit it when you’ve been fooled. PB was a good sport, though, confessing that the tagboard citrus fruit looked like the real thing just for a split-second. Now we get a kick out of pointing out our miraculous orange tree to every unsuspecting guest. They are so impressed — until they see our smirks and take a closer look. It may appear to be an orange, but if it doesn’t smell like an orange, or feel like an orange, or taste like an orange, it’s probably not an orange. Trouble is, looks can be deceiving. From a distance, that orange tag is pretty convincing. Zoom out far enough, and what is fake can be mistaken as real. Maybe that’s why we don’t like to let people get too close. Our cardboard fruit will be revealed for what it is.
That little plant sitting outside my kitchen window has become a daily reminder to me: it’s not enough to look like a Jesus-follower. I had better sound like one and act like one and even smell like one (believers are “the fragrance of life”. 2 Cor. 2:16). If I want to bear real fruit, it has to come from the real Vine.
I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in Me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5