There's an apple for every taste bud- the stock red delicious for everyday, or the Gala for the exquisite. How about the Jonathan, Braeburn or golden delicious itself! Most of the apples on display from late summer through Fall are grafted. They come from rootstock which combined with the PH factor soil and the scion added to the rootstock, gives us variety of apples we see at Apple barns and markets. The rootstock is the main root in the ground and the scion is the chip or portion of another tested variety which is grafted to the rootstock. The same is true to other fruit trees like pears, berries and more.
When a new apple tree is transferred from the nursery to the ground....whether the residential backyard or the commercial orchard, everything then depend on the rootstock and the soil. The apple tree in this photo was planted less than two years ago. However, it will be another 2-3 years before it begins bearing fruit by the bushel, no matter how many tiny little apples are showing here. So it is with our faith.
At the moment of conversion, when Christ brought us out of the domain of darkness into the kingdom of His Marvellous Light, we were grafted into the very Rootstock of Heaven! Everything depended on and still depends on Him. We are the little scion grafted into the rootstock. The Holy Spirit provides the nutrition for us to go and it does take time for us to grow and bear fruit.
Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude....Colossians 2:6-7
The analogies to the productive and powerful Christian life are so real in relation to apple trees that it's uncanny. These two short verses are proof from the Word of God. The maturing Christian life starts with Christ, remains in Christ and grows in Christ!
So, how do we grow, mature and live a fruitful life which is pleasing to God?
1. Receive Christ. Jesus is Lord and He died for all. The Holy Spirit convicts, we respond, relent, repent, reach out and surrender to His calling for rejuvenation. We must then receive the gift.
2. Just a closer walk with Him. When Jesus saves you and I, He is immediately our best Friend! He knows the way because He is Way. He saved us to be with Him for eternity so this is absolutely natural. Enoch WALKED with God for 300 years and was no more because God took His best friend at the time Home, to be with Him while he (Enoch) was still alive. The fruit of Enoch's evangelism, faith and family was found in men like Methusalah and Noah!
3. Be a scion to the Rootstock. Like the bunch of grapes is connected to the vine, we. MUST be firmlygrounded, having taken up personal residence in the Rock and Root called Jesus Christ.
4. Be built up. The scion is grafted into the rootstock of salvation and we are nourished in the rich soil of the Bible, prayer and praise fueled by the Holy Spirit.
5. Be established. This kind establishment is NOT the status quo of mortal worldly lost men. This is the maturing status of the Qualified...the qualified who shows a little fruit in a few years only to bear bushels of bountiful goodness, worthy of the Kingdom of Heaven.
The maturing Christian is like an apple tree in many respects. The faithfully surrendered believers among us seek to become apples of His Eye. Why not, press on? Amen