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Isn’t it funny how you can read something several times in the Bible, and something NEW jumps out at you that you’ve NEVER read before? You HAVE read it, but it speaks to you differently.

I’m reading the Bible through in a year, and I’m on January 18th. No, don’t check the calendar, I’m reading ahead when I have time. I know how I am. 😉 I’m also reading it backwards as well. LOL I’m on December 28th as well. I’ve read the 31st, 30th, and 29th….I’m hungry for it, I tell you!

So, I’m reading the story of Joseph and his coat of many colors, and then it skips to his brother, Judah! In Genesis 38:1-30….I don’t think I have EVER read this story before! A little surprised….OK, frankly, A LOT surprised! LOL I guess when I studied Joseph, I skipped RIGHT over this chapter! HAAAA!! Read it…WOW….umm…..WOWWWW! LOL All my brain can say right now…..

And then I am reading in Matthew 12. I really like Matthew. Today, a couple of things jumped out at me that I wanted to share:

Matthew 12:33-37

“A tree is identified by its fruit. If a tree is good, its fruit will be good. If a tree is bad, its fruit will be bad. You brood of snakes! How could evil men like you speak what is good and right? For whatever is in your heart determines what you say. A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. And I tell you this, you must give an account on judgment day for every idle word you speak. The words you say will either acquit you or condemn you.”

This is a LOT of information to chew on all at the same time, so I’m going to break some off and chew a little at a time.

“A tree is identified by its fruit. If a tree is good, its fruit will be good. If a tree is bad, its fruit will be bad.”

This….this makes sense. And how many of us are going to ADMIT we have BAD fruit hanging from our tree? You? What about you over there? Oh….ME?? Bad fruit? Nooo….NEVER! But we DO! And that is what my goal has been for 7 months now: be a tree that produces GOOD fruit.

Gossip is NOT a good fruit. It’s hurtful, it’s mean-spirited, and you are untrustworthy. Please move your toes because I’m stepping on my own right now and I can only get to one set of feet at a time…maybe I’ll get to YOURS after I’m done with mine. Just wait your turn.

Lustfullness…another bad fruit. Oh yes, I know…this is a MALE bad fruit…women don’t EVER suffer from this. I know….whatever. Get over yourself. Of course women suffer from this as well…come on! We just DENY it! Til now…. Pick up a nice romance novel lately? Read any of it? They write about these amazing fictitious men with rippling muscles and love scenes that most women DREAM of! And we lust after men who aren’t even real, and dreams that will never come true. It’s harmful to ourselves and harmful to our marriages. It’s unfair to expect our husbands to compete with this, they will NEVER be able to fulfill those dreams and it’s not logical to expect them to! We have these lofty EXPECTATIONS of grandeur that is not achievable by any REAL person! Let’s revisit those imaginary couples in 10 years when they both have gained weight, have had 2.5 children and both work full time jobs. Oh yes….let’s get REAL with ourselves and real with our husbands. It’s harmful. Cut that bad fruit off of there. Just WHACK it off…. Be content with the man God gave you, and love him for all his faults and flaws and laugh. Enjoy him. When you don’t expect your husband to be PERFECT, and love him for WHO he is, you will find amazing contentment with your marriage. Word.

Yes, I just said that….I’m on a roll here….

Did this table order a side of POTTY MOUTH? Yes? You too? Now why is it, when we became teenagers, hit middle school and hear everyone else using potty words, we feel SO big and grown up? Oh come on…you KNOW you snuck those words at school with all your little friends and felt SO mature! And then feared EVER opening your mouth at home because you just KNEW “d@mn it” was gonna FLY OUT of it! Mouth, meet Mom’s backhand. No, I’m teasing, I never slipped at home. 😉 Sorry, Mom, now you know the UGLY truth: I was naughty girl when I thought you didn’t know. But I never smoked or did drugs, so don’t ground me too bad. Although I would LOVE a time-out in my room, with NO ONE ELSE. 😛

Ephesians 4:29

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

Ok, that verse can go with gossip too….just stick up there mentally in your brain.

These are just SOME examples  of those fruits that I pluck off my tree ALL the time. It has gotten very much BETTER, but just because I pluck it off, doesn’t mean it DIES. It’s one of those things that I have to pluck off continuously:

Matthew 16:24

Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.”

We have to make an effort DAILY to NOT allow that bad fruit to grow!  So how do we do that?  One way I’ve found is daily Bible reading.  Wow…novel idea.  Heh.  I have to pick up my Bible and find DAILY encouragement in NOT allowing that bad fruit to grow.  I don’t WANT it to grow.  I fill my head with GOOD things instead of the bad…

I want to be a Tree who bears GOOD fruit.

So, if you feel the Father has been urging you to prune the bad fruit, I encourage you to do it.  It doesn’t REALLY hurt, but it IS a sacrifice.

One worth making.

And with that, I’ll have to continue the rest of the verses later.  See?  It’s a MEATY reading!