Friday, June 18, 2010

Taping Fruit onto a Tree

"Pursue Love..."1
Trying to be loving doesn't work!

We are taught that to be a good Christian we must act like Christ but when we try we find it difficult indeed! I am never so angry, selfish, and miserable as when I try to not get mad, put others first, and be happy.

Dallas Willard tells of a different approach. Referring to the Beatitudes and 1st Corinthians 13, the Bible's "Love" chapter, he wrote:
People... are taught to read it, as telling them to be patient, kind, free of jealousy, and so on...But Paul is plainly saying -- look at his words -- that it is love that does these things, not us, and that what we are to do is to "pursue love" (1 Cor. 14:1). As we "catch" love, we then find that these things are after all actually being done by us."2
Trying to not get angry, to put others first, or to be happy is like trying to produce fruit by taping it onto a tree. Fruit is produced by making sure the tree the kind wanted and that it is healthy - good fruit is the byproduct.

As we pursue Love, Himself3, our nature changes and we act accordingly.

- fritz

1 - 1st Corinthians 14:1a (New King James)
2 - The Divine Conspiracy by Dallas Willard, published by HarperCollins, copyright 1998, pg.187
3 - 1st John 4:16

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