Friday, February 12, 2016

“Bearing the Right Kind of Fruit” by Chad Young




By Chad Young

Kelli, a close friend of my wife’s, moved with her family from Atlanta to Tampa last summer, much to our family’s chagrin. Our daughter Evelyn and Kelli’s daughter Georgia were best friends, and we’ve missed them terribly ever since.

A new Floridian, Kelli found the tropical plants with their lush green foliage growing year round to be pretty exciting.   When one of the trees in her yard started growing limes, Kelli couldn’t wait to pick the fruit and try out new recipes.  She tasted the lime and thought, “Wow, that is sour!  I guess that’s what Florida limes are like.”

During the next several weeks, Kelli’s tree continued to produce limes, too many for her family to eat. She gave many of them away to her new neighbors, who looked a little puzzled but thanked her for the gift.  “There’s such an abundance of limes here.  These people probably think I’m crazy for giving them to neighbors,” Kelli thought to herself.

When one of the green limes began to turn yellow, Kelli quickly picked most of the rest of the green limes before they, too, began to turn bad like the yellow one.  They all tasted extremely sour like the ones she had picked earlier, but she used them in cooking just the same.

A few days later, Kelli’s daughter Georgia looked out the window and exclaimed, “Look, Mommy! It’s an orange!” Kelli then looked, and sure enough, there was one nice, big orange hanging by itself from a branch of her “lime” tree. Kelli picked the orange and tried it, realizing it was one of the tastiest, juiciest oranges she’d had in a while.  No wonder the neighbors had given puzzled looks to this Florida newbie.  She was sad to think she had picked so many of the “oranges” that she just had this one to enjoy.


When my wife told me this true story from our hilarious friend, it reminded me how sometimes we miss out on the best things in life when we’re impatient or fail to wait for God’s timing. Obviously, Kelli would have had patience if she had known the juicy orange fruit would come, but she didn’t know what was ahead.  For some of us, in friendships, dating relationships, and in our careers, it is easy to make quick decisions without really praying and seeking what God wants for us. 

Years ago, I memorized a verse that still to this day I pray aloud to God as I’m surrendering control of my day to him: Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths (Proverbs 3:5-6 ESV).

Are you bearing good fruit? Are you waiting on the Lord to bear the right kind of fruit through you? Be patient, and wait on the Lord in your decision-making because only he knows what path he has in mind for you.

MEET CHAD YOUNG

To read more of Chad’s adventures, see his new book, Wrestling with Faith, Love and Gators. He’s a 14-year Cru staff member residing in Atlanta, Ga., with his wife Elizabeth and their children, Wyatt, Clark, Evelyn, and Josilynn. He’s also the author of Authenticity: Real Faith in a Phony, Superficial World.

Cru is largest campus ministry in the world.

Here are the purchase links:


Wrestling with Faith, Love and Gators Paperback: http://ow.ly/Vy082
Wrestling with Faith, Love and Gators Kindle: http://ow.ly/Y8MZG






SUMMARY OF WRESTLING WITH FAITH, LOVE AND GATORS


Here are the purchase links:

Wrestling with Faith, Love and Gators Paperback: http://ow.ly/Vy082
Wrestling with Faith, Love and Gators Kindle: http://ow.ly/Y8MZG


“Chad, jump on the gator’s back!”

In a split second, a decision had to be made. Did Chad love his future brother-in-law Frank enough to help him control a powerful seven and a half foot alligator? Ultimately there was a subconscious devotion toward Frank that affected his decision on what to do in that moment. We all face decisions every day in our lives. Some of them are small decisions, but others are potentially life altering. What we decide to do in those split seconds comes down to this, which is true for all of us: We all have beliefs about life and love, about what is most important, and we all act on those beliefs.


In this book, Wrestling with Faith, Love, and Gators: Overcoming Barriers to Fully Loving God, Chad Young addresses what many Christians are missing: being in love with God. The lack of genuine faith and love in the church as well as the seemingly fewer and fewer Christians who are “all in” are the main reasons why 59% of college students who grew up with a Christian background are leaving the Christian faith. You hear people say we should love God with all our heart, soul and mind, but what does that really look like? Chad uses his own faith journey and humorous stories to call readers to a deeper, legitimate love for God.