Thoughts from an Amateur Berry Picker

 

blueberryI learned a few things while picking blueberries this week…

 

A freezing atmosphere at the beginning of the growing season will stunt their growth and shorten their fruit bearing season.

 

The fruit does not all grow at the same rate…some berries were ripe and some where days from being ready…all on the same bush.

 

Although every bush was planted in the same soil and grown under the same sky at the same time, they were all in different stages of fruit readiness.

 

You had to get up close to the bush in order to see the fruit….at least where we were.

 

A week before we went to pick blueberries, I had been discussing another set of fruit with some friends.  That fruit was the fruit of the Spirit.  A question was raised regarding which of the fruits God was currently developing in each of our lives using the circumstances we each found ourselves in.  Each person had a different answer because of different sets of circumstances and different seasons.  It was a refreshing way to look at circumstances and the fruits of the Spirit.  It was nice to look at that long list and know that they are all being developed in me, but I don’t have to get them all perfect, right now!  It was good to see how a specific one could be highlighted for a specific circumstance.  It was fun to see how God uses the parts of our lives to develop specific qualities and strengthen us in our weaknesses or uphold us in our victories…all in His perfect timing.

 

A couple of nights before we picked the berries I had a dream about a lone blueberry bush with green berries on it.  We were in some sort of greenhouse and only one bush was producing fruit.  It was a small bush, but it had fruit.  As you can see from the picture above, blueberries aren’t really green at any stage, at least not the color of green in my dream. I’ve been pondering this dream and my observations from the blueberry farm and the way that God builds character and develops the fruits in our lives.

 

The dream was definitely about the fruit and the atmosphere and the stage of readiness of the fruit…

 

I could apply these thoughts to the fruit that God is developing in my life or the lives of those around me, including those living under my roof.  Fruit will grow best in a warm atmosphere…a cold, chilly atmosphere will only stunt its growth and shorten its fruitfulness.  Although we are all in the same atmosphere, our fruits are developing at different stages and need time to develop to the perfect ripeness before being picked.  If you want to see the fruit that is developing in someone’s life, you may need to get close to them and take a deeper look.  Just because the fruit isn’t ready for harvesting, doesn’t mean they aren’t producing fruit…it just needs more time.

 

Oh…and one more thing…the size of a blueberry does not necessarily determine it’s sweetness…so don’t go judging the quality of fruit by its size.

 

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Thankful Thursday: Another Birthday!

I celebrated another year on this planet today.  It seems as though I have been celebrating this day for over a week.  I’ll take it!  It’s been a fun one.  I’ve enjoyed birthday dinners and movies and presents and cards…what’s not to love about that?  I’ve received a birthday blessing or two and always cherish those…they are winks from God.  I got to spend the day having fun with my two awesome daughters and they wanted to hang out with me…who could ask for more?  They thoughtfully added to my collection of blue birds…they are paying attention to what’s important to me.  I received a cd in the mail today that was supposed to have arrived weeks ago…nice touch God!

I sit here tonight grateful for another year, grateful for a loving, caring family, grateful for friends who wanted to celebrate my day and grateful for a loving God who fills each year with his blessings.

And for the record…well…the debate over just exactly what age is middle-aged is still up for debate…half of 100 is 50 and I am not 50…so…

Music Monday: When I can’t think straight

I’ve been searching my iTunes for a song that speaks to what is on my mind today.  I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about thinking the past few days.  I’ve been reading about some of the fallacies in the way people think.  According to the book I’ve been reading there are 99 different ones.  I’ve only read about a 1/3 of them so far.  Sounds like an uplifting book, huh? :/

I have already drawn a couple of conclusions…

Thinking is overrated and flawed…no wonder God told us to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.

5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. – 2 Corinthians 10:5

Without the Holy Spirit as my guide…I am at the mercy of human wisdom which is exactly what the enemy was after in the garden when he tempted Eve with that fruit.

3 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”

2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”

4 “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman.5 “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” – Genesis 3:1-5

Apparently knowing stuff and knowing what to do with it are two different things…only God is smart enough to handle all that knowledge. With over 99 different flawed ways of thinking…we are all sunk without a GUIDE. He gave us our brains. He gave us free will. I am so thankful He also gave us His word and His Spirit so we would know what to do with all He has given us.