Fruit That Lasts

{I am so very excited! You guys know just how deeply I adore the Kingdom activity of my brave friends and there are several women creating gorgeous projects with a Mighty purpose in mind and I want so much for you to meet them.  In the next couple of months I will highlight a new brave friend I want you to know more about.  Today I am introducing you to Leslie Bauer and I know you will love her heart, her words and and her passion for us all to produce Fruit that lasts.}

fruit that lasts  

“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.” John 15:16 (NIV)

 

It was insta-intrigue when I stumbled across this verse recently—and I stopped, captivated by the small yet substantial phrase sandwiched within: fruit that will last.

 

We talk a lot in our Christian circles about “fruit”—we all want it. And so we set about cultivating it, even subjecting ourselves to the painful pruning required to yield it. But the question is, how? What is the way to a lasting harvest? How exactly do we bear this kind of fruit?

 

I found the answer in the next verse…

 

“This is my command: Love each other.” John 15:17 (NIV)

 

This kind of fruit is born of love…and only of the Vine that embodies it—Christ Jesus.  (John 15:5)

 

Love. It’s the first of the fruits of the Spirit, mentioned 333 times in Scripture, touted as the greatest of the famed trio: faith, hope and love. Called by Paul the “most excellent way” in the introduction of the “love chapter”—1 Corinthians 13. It always perseveres; never fails. (http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/Popular-Bible-Words-2.php)

 

It lasts.

 

It was in love that God chose and appointed us “to be the prime instruments of his glory and honour in the world”—to love others by diligently sharing His love with them. His intent was and is that the gospel be “perpetuated; that the fruit may remain, that the good effect of their labours may continue in the world from generation to generation, to the end of time.” Henry, M. (1706). John. In Matthew Henry commentary on the whole Bible (abridged). Retrieved from https://www.biblegateway.com/resources/matthew-henry/John.15.9-John.15.17

 

A weighty commission, but thankfully, we have a stellar example to follow. Our God is good at love–the best. And He models His outrageous love daily for us to imitate; both in His relationship us and in His Word:

 

“As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you. Now remain in my love.” John 15:9 (NIV)

 

And His is not a fleeting love—as Psalm 138:8 reminds us, “Your love, Lord, endures forever…”

 

His is an enduring love…a legacy love, the likes of which births legacy fruit.

 

The Bible says we have nothing if we have not love. (1 Corinthians 13:2) It’s my most ardent prayer–that I would live a life of love. What could matter more?

  • “If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.” 1 Corinthians 13:1 (NIV)

 

Devastating, the prospect of a life lived in futility. Empty; legacy-less–love-less.

 

I remember a season a couple of years ago when the Lord overwhelmed my heart with an all-around need for love…and it became my ritual every morning at the gym to listen on repeat to Steven Curtis Chapman’s song Love Take Me Over–over. And over. And over. Washing me of the ick…until love remained.

 

In our humanity we need a love overhaul almost daily, don’t we? The flesh takes over like wildfire, consuming our hearts’ goodness, selfishness becoming our default. Yes, we all need a good love washing (and most especially now, in light of the recent heart wrenching events in Orlando)…

 

…But hear this, fellow brokenhearted: there is hope for us. There is the grace of sanctification:

 

“But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life.” Romans 6:22 (ESV) 

 

“Sanctification is by faith alone because only faith receives the power to bear the fruit of love….To be sure, our progressive sanctification, our all too slow growth in Christlikeness, matters. It is the necessary evidence that the seed of spiritual life is in our soul, and that our faith is real. But oh, what a difference it makes to be assured, in the discouraging darkness of our own imperfection, that we have a perfect righteousness outside ourselves, namely, Christ’s.” Piper, John. When the Darkness Will Not Lift. Crossway Books Audio, 2009.  introduction.

 

So let us, empowered by the Lover of Our Souls, Himself, operate in “the most excellent way”.

 

Let us LOVE.

 

Praying orchards upon orchards of legacy harvest over us all, dripping His enduring love over a hurting world…

 

Xoxo, Leslie

 IMG_1246Leslie Bauer is a wife, a M.O.M. (Master of Multitasking), a writer and a blogger, whose passion is writing into the hearts of women, ministering; administering our great God’s love. You can find her in the foothills of Denver, and at www.lesliemariebauer.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comments

  1. Ashley Jansen says:

    Love both you girls. Wish we were going back all together to family camp again. Thanks for your words Leslie!

  2. Atta girl!!! Carry on!! Beloved let us love one another! Working on a body,soul, spirit post as it relates to sexuality. With the foundation that the greatest commandment is to love the Lord with all your heart, soul, and mind and then to love your neighbor as yourself. Hugs friend!! Can’t wait to see finished product!!

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