Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
Tasting fruit and a packet of seeds!
Over the years we have heard many marvelous testimonies. What a blessing it is to hear how God is working in other Christians’ lives. Many times God will use these testimonies to inspire and motivate us to pursue things He has for us – to draw closer to Him. Years ago we heard a valuable illustration that helped us understand the important role that growth plays in our own faith.
When we hear testimonies of Christians who are walking in faith in a powerful and challenging way, think of it as though they are allowing us to sample their ‘fruit’ – the ‘fruit’ of their lives. Think of being in a group listening, and instead of words, the speaker is walking among us handing out tomatoes or plums or peaches – (whichever one sounds good to you). As s/he speaks, we are biting into the fruit – savoring the sweetness and richness.
The same lesson applies to reading about the saints who have gone before us. At times we are moved to tears when reading of the marvelous things they did or the difficulties they faithfully endured. ‘Tasting’ those precious experiences are intended to draw us closer to God. The more we taste, the more we want. But we must remember, we are ‘tasting’ the ‘fruit’ of their faith walk with Jesus. When we leave the meeting, or lay down the book we are reading, we do not walk away with a basket of our own fruit. We walk away with a priceless packet of seeds – to grow our own; to make it ours!
The testimonies we hear or read about are intended to produce faith within us but that process takes time and obedience. We need to recognize that trying to walk in someone else’s faith can be like trying to do a downhill slalom on skis when we’ve only been on the beginner slopes. Typically such attempts lead to needless crashes. Allow these times to push us into the Lord; expressing our desire to grow and walk in such faith. He will lead us on His path through the ‘School of the Spirit’ to get us there.