MAKING RIGHT CHOICES IS THE FRUIT THAT COMES OUT OF OUR LIVES WHEN WE TRUST GOD.
Bible Reading of the Day: Read Romans 5:18-21.
Verse of the Day: “Christ’s one act of righteousness makes all people right in God’s sight and gives them life” (Romans 5:18).
“What are we going to do with that stump now, Grandpa?” Heather asked. She had just watched her grandpa pull an old stump and its roots out of the ground with his tractor.
Grandpa said, “We’ll just bring some kerosene and kindling back from the barn and burn it right where it sits.”
He gripped Heather under her arms and hoisted her up to the tractor seat. Then he vaulted up after her and sat her back down in his lap. “Like I told you, Heather, that ol’ stump is like our sinful nature,” he reminded his granddaughter, “and that sinful nature is what keeps us from choosing to do right all the time, right?”
“Do you think you could have pulled that stump out of the ground all by yourself?” Grandpa asked.
Heather’s eyes widened. She shook her head.
Grandpa smiled. “Do you think I could have pulled that stump out of the ground by myself?”
Heather hesitated a moment, then answered quietly, “No.”
Grandpa let out a good-natured laugh. “Don’t worry, Heather, that doesn’t hurt my feelings. You’re right. That mess of roots is stronger than both of us put together,”
“But you pulled it out with the tractor!” Heather said triumphantly.
“Exactly right!” Grandpa said. “It took something a lot stronger than me-” he patted the tractor’s large metal fender—”to overcome those roots. It’s the same way with doing right, Heather. Neither one of us-not even both of us put together-can overcome our sinful nature. We can only make right choices by relying on God’s strength and trust him to make us good.”
Grandpa rubbed his chin. “Come to think of it,” he said, “making right choices is the fruit that comes out of our lives when we trust God.”
Heather pivoted on her grandfather’s lap. “Was that tree an apple tree?” she asked, pointing to the stump they had pulled out of the ground.
“No,” Grandpa said. “That’s a hickory. It did bear fruit, though.”
“What kind of fruit?” Heather asked.
“Nuts,” Grandpa answered, “just like you!” Grandpa started the tractor’s engine with one hand and tickled his granddaughter with the other as they laughed together all the way back to the barn.
TO DO: Place a fruit display on your kitchen or dining-room table this week to remind the whole family to make right choices—the fruit of a daily relationship with God.
TO PRAY: “Lord, we want to live fruitful lives. Help us to trust you.”