From the time I was 4 years old until about 19, the home my family lived in had multiple fruit trees and numerous flowers growing on them. My dad was very gifted in maintaining just about every type of plant, tree, and flower that grew in that area of the country. Our place was very pleasant, especially in the spring, summer, and early fall. Our front and back yards looked like something out of a florist ad. There were 4 different types of apple trees, two types of pear trees, two peach trees, about 3 red cherry trees, and a large purple plum tree. We had fresh fruit all during the producing months, and my mom would can extra for the winter months that Michigan is notorious for. (any emphasis mine)
Our Heavenly Father has provided for us “Fruits of the Spirit,” which are there for us if only we will accept them. In fact, the gift that we were provided on a dreary hill called “Golgotha” is not seasonal but available 24/7 for all who have Jesus as their Savior. The cost is free to us but was paid for in full by the precious blood of the Son of God. If anyone could possess all of the earth’s treasures, they still would not have enough to buy one second of time in the beautiful “Land of God” called Heaven. Galatians 5:22-23 says, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such there is no law.”
There is a great difference between using “works” to try and earn our Salvation instead of using our talents to honor the Lord. Any so-called works we could ever attempt, no matter how noble we think they may be, are like filthy rags to the Lord (Isaiah 64:6). Ephesians 2:8-9 is very specific about this; “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
Rounding this out, we continue into verse 10; “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” These “works” are provided to us through the Father, not by our own efforts. Our part is to receive and accept what He has given.
Each and every one of us is like a special “fruit” for the Father. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 12:4-6, “Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.”
Going to Romans 12:4-8, “For as in one body, we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function; so we, though many, are one body in Christ; and individually members one of another. Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them; if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in his generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.”
In order to “grow” in our Father’s garden, there is a very special “additive” that nurtures and feeds our service. It’s a simple 4-letter word that contains all of the power we need to grow – Love. The Bible is full of teachings, and Jesus gave the two greatest commandments paraphrased as “Love God – Love each other” (Matthew 22:37-40). John tells us in 1 John 4:8, “Anyone who does not love, does not know God, because God is Love.”
Almost everyone can relate to 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, which is the “Love is…” message. It’s very popular and is used in many wedding vows. The summary of this message is 1 Corinthians 13:13; “So now faith, hope and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”
All who have love in their hearts are growing in God’s garden. All who hate are weeds such as “tares,” which Webster describes as an injurious weed “resembling” wheat. They are part of Satan’s crop and are only meant to grow among the good crops and actually destroy them as they reach maturity.
One more point: our love is very special in that we are to love everyone. This does not mean we have to love their ways or even to like them as a person. Our love is for their eternal souls, and our prayer is they will turn from their evil ways, inspired by Satan, and accept Jesus before their days here are done. Jesus loved every soul He ever had contact with, even though there were those He disliked. The best example would be the Pharisees, who were full of self-pride, but not into the true word of the Lord. As with the thief on the cross next to Jesus, anyone who repented and called out to be saved before they passed away will be in Heaven.
On the other hand, any who did not repent but died without receiving the forgiveness that our Savior offers everyone will be in the Revelation 20:11-15 Great White Throne judgment. This judgment will apply to all pre-Calvary souls that did not follow the will of God and all souls from Calvary to the end of the Millennial reign of the Savior that refused to repent, receive and accept Jesus. There are no exceptions.
The A, B, Cs of Salvation are found in Romans 10:9-13. For some, this just seems too easy, and they believe there has to be more to “getting into Heaven.” First, admit we are all sinners (see also Romans 3:23) and must have a Savior to be able to come to the Father (also John 14:6). Believe that Jesus is that Savior who died for our sins; my sins; and that only through His grace and the mercy of the Father can we be saved. Call out to Jesus to forgive us our sins, and all who do so will be saved. That’s it—no special recitals or ceremonies, no special works or deeds, no fraternity hazing; nothing else.
God wants no one to be lost, and I firmly believe we’re being given time right now to see just how close we are to the Rapture of all believers. All the signs are screaming at us through all the evil and uncertainty there is around us. Nothing else has to happen before Jesus calls. God will soon go past 2 Peter 3:9, and all true believers will be removed to be kept from the terrible 7-year tribulation. Then it will be as in the days of Noah; God will close the door and allow what has been prophesied to take place with His wrath being poured out on this evil planet. Our exit in the Rapture will be completed in less than one second.
Right now would not be too early to ask Jesus to be your Savior. The Bible is not a book of fairytales and myths but is God’s absolute true words to assure us we can have Heaven if we choose it. If anyone ends up in hell, it won’t be because God decided to send them there; they will have chosen it for themselves.
Your eternal forever future rides on your decision to either believe, receive and accept Jesus as your Savior, or to accept Satan and all the ways of this evil world and reject the only One that can save you. It will either be Heaven or Hell; no other option exists.
Call out today, and be a beautiful addition to the Father’s garden.
Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus