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Of Tomato Plants and  A Fig Tree

This year I decided not to do anymore container gardening which produced a lot of eggplants, tomatoes, gourds and bitter melons in previous years. But when I saw a packet of tomato seeds with a picture of a bunch of big tomatoes, I was encouraged to put them in some pots with soil from last year. The seeds germinated and the plants have grown tall and luxuriantly leafy, but no flowers were coming out that would eventually turn into fruit I have been expecting to see.

I replenished the pots with new garden soil and put fertilizer spikes containing the proper fruiting nutrients. After weeks of watering and waiting, I still have not seen signs of the plants producing any tomatoes.

I remembered the parable of the barren fig tree which Jesus told the disciples. “A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. And he said to the vine dresser, ‘Look, for three years now I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and I find none. Cut it down. Why should it use up the ground?’ And he answered him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and put on manure. Then if it should bear fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.’”

I have decided to wait it out for my plants. I might still see the fruit of my labor.

Like plants and animals, we human creatures of God are placed on this earth with a specific purpose: to grow and bear fruit, thus glorifying God.

The Baltimore Catechism very succinctly and clearly answers the question "Why did God make you?": "God made me to know Him, to love Him, and to serve Him in this world, and to be happy with Him forever in heaven."

The circumstances of where we are now in our lives may be challenging, but God gives us sufficient grace to fulfill the purpose for which we were created.

May we all spend our lives cooperating with His grace -- in growing in the knowledge, love and service of God, which includes loving and serving others.#

English Translation of this song:

No one lives only for himself. We are not our own. Man does not die alone. Chorus: Christ Jesus calls us to love one another, and to understand. Friend to friend, brother to brother, we must give our hand. In our love for one another, in each kindly word. The love of Christ shines forth, and His Gospel is distinctly heard. We feed the hungry, cloth the naked, give drink to those who thirst, For we must serve our brothers, rememb’ring God has loved us first. We clothe the naked, shelter the stranger The hungry and poor we feed. For we are called to serve one another as God serves those in need. We do not live alone, Our lives belong to God In living and dying for one another, the Lord remains with us.

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