Where’s the Fruit: In the Higher Education Years

The teen-to-adult years tend to be a delightful culmination of reaping where we have sown. Let me quote from the September issue of the Schoolhouse Support E-Newsletter:

We trained them in respect when they were young, so are reaping blessed companionship now. We have sown discipline, so we are reaping self-control and maturity. We taught them how to learn and how to teach themselves and are reaping teens that can learn anything and excel. We have sown scripture and a biblical worldview and are reaping young people who are more interested in truth than in cultural fads and foolish friends. We have trained them in work and service and are reaping the benefits of responsible young adults. We do more than "survive" or "endure" or "live to tell about it." We are blessed to be among those who actually enjoy and are very proud of their teens.

There is bounty not only for those who labored, but also for those who just come by to share in the fruit. This teen-to-adulthood season becomes a time when they learn to share with others, to start investing themselves and their work with a perspective that is focused on eternal things.

Where’s the Fruit: In Us

What about us parents? Where’s our harvest? Sometimes I feel like Sandy’s corn stalks that produced so little corn. Those stalks had the appearance of corn, with their long stems and green leaves and looking bountiful from a distance, but upon closer inspection, they were found to be fruitless and useless to the planter. I remembered again the fig tree that looked so beautiful but had nothing to offer Jesus. Ouch. How many times have I put more effort in making myself look good or making my house look good or desiring that my children look good (or at least make me look good), yet failing to offer anything of substance to Jesus? So many times I have been fruitless and useless to the Planter. My desire is to produce fruit for Him, and I desperately want to raise my children to do the same. Let’s ask the Sower to plant, water, and bear in us fruit that lasts, so that the seeds of the Word of God will go deep and the cares of the world will not choke them out. (See Matthew 13:18–23.)

Death Brings Forth Life

One year while looking at all the fall colors, I realized that only God can make death look beautiful. Only God can create life from death. As the leaves change color and die, they provide a new beauty to behold. In the same way, we must die to ourselves in order to become beautiful, fruitful parents who will bear fruit: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.” (John 12:24)

Not only can God create life from death in our own lives, but He also says He will multiply the seed that we are sowing and increase our fruit. This is a wonderful promise:

 

And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work: (As it is written, He hath dispersed abroad; he hath given to the poor: his righteousness remaineth for ever. Now he that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness;) being enriched in every thing to all bountifulness, which causeth through us thanksgiving to God.  (2 Corinthians 9:8–11)

Consider Your Ways

Sandy asked us to consider ourselves and our families: “Is there unity or division, joy or sorrow, humility or pride? Are you washing your children with the water of the Word? May we be faithful to water our plants with Jesus, who is the Living Water, and in doing so, may we produce a harvest of much fruit.”

“Blessed is every one that feareth the Lord; that walketh in his ways. For thou shalt eat the labor of thine hands: happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee. Thy wife shall be as a fruitful vine by the sides of thine house: thy children like olive plants round about thy table” (Psalm 128:1–3)


Deborah Wuehler is the Senior Editor for TOS, editor of the Schoolhouse Support E-Newsletter, wife to Richard, and mom to eight gifts from heaven. She loves digging for buried treasure in the Word, reading, writing, homeschooling, and dark chocolate!

Copyright 2008 The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, LLC
www.thehomeschoolmagazine.com
This article orginally appeared in the Fall 2008 issue of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, LLC
Reprinted with permission from the publisher