Week 16, Day 5
April 22, 2022
Scripture: Matthew 12
““Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit. You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. Good people bring good things out of the good stored up in them, and evil people bring evil things out of the evil stored up in them.” (Matthew 12:33–35, TNIV)
Dallas Willard, one of my favorite authors says in his book The Great Omission: The Cost of Non-Discipleship, “If you tend to the tree, the fruit will take care of itself.”
I have committed that to memory, as it ties directly to what Jesus is teaching here in Matthew 12, “Good people bring the good things out of what is stored up in them… Make a tree good…out of the overflow of your heart, your mouth speaks” This teaching settles into my heart and mind and Willard’s gives a nice directive to it.
Tend to my life Jesus!
If what I hear out of my mouth seems ungrateful, crass, bitter, or angry – then there is probably a need that is unmet, a wound that needs healed, and bitter root that needs removed, a sin that needs confessed and forgiven. When evil fruit comes out of my mouth, there is something that needs tending to in my soul. When the evil that is within me, comes out of me, I need Jesus to do his work. Tend to my life Jesus!
Discipleship is not only following Jesus but also allowing Jesus and inviting him into our lives to transform it. I want Jesus to transform me from the inside out. This, I think, is what it means to tend to our hearts.
How does Jesus tend to your heart? When does he care for your heart? Do you take the time to consider your ways and Jesus’ way? Is he given authority over your life?
Do you do the will of God the Father?
Do you pay attention to the words coming out of your heart?
Where do you need healing today?
Is there a bitterness inside of you bearing an ugly fruit?
We all have things that need attention by the caretaker of our souls. Let Jesus tend to your heart today.
Jordan Ickes, Minister of Etna Green Church of Christ.