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I read an article a long time ago that the cost of the actual liquid in a perfume bottle is less than 1% of the retail cost while most of the cost comes from the perfume bottle. This intrigued me greatly and as one who uses Hermes perfumes, I started focusing more on the liquid by purchasing the refillable ones. What matters to me more was the content of the perfume not necessarily the bottle because the bottle sits at home while I wear the content of the perfume on me all day.
I came across a verse of scripture recently that reminded me of the decision I made a long time ago and one of my favourite sayings; ‘hefty but empty.’ And he had a son, whose name was Saul, …from his shoulders and upward he was higher than any of the people – 1 Samuel 9:2. This verse of scripture described Saul as the perfect king in terms of his appearance and features but unfortunately, he lacked the necessary leadership skills needed to lead the people of Israel which resulted in his rejection as being king of Israel.
However, his successor, David who did not fit the physical description of a king was a far better leader than he was because he was not empty and knew what leadership entails. In my over thirty years of being in ministry, I have come across several individuals who fit the description of the kind of assistants I need in ministry, they talk the part, they look the part, and they act the part, but they lack the right substance to produce anything meaningful.
Our Lord Jesus Christ was also deceived by an appearance in the book of Mark; And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply he might find any thing thereon: and when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet. – Mark 11:13. At that moment, Christ cursed the tree because having lured him in with its lush appearance, he found out disappointingly that the tree has no fruit and that best describes the title of today’s article; ‘hefty but empty.’ Like Jesus, I have been deceived by the appearances of people that I have come across over time.
I do not want to dismiss the place of appearance in today’s world; however, it is important to ensure that the effort and time put into making the outer person alluring and acceptable should also be put, into equipping the inner man and mind. You do not want to be like the fig tree that attracted Christ but could not keep him because it did not have any fruit.
I will share with you 5 ways to equip your inner man and to bear fruits while ensuring your outward appearance remains attractive.
4 WAYS TO BEAR FRUIT
- EDUCATE YOUR SPIRIT: As a Christian, the first thing to do if you want to bear fruit is to educate your spirit man by reading the bible on a regular basis. As Joshua 1:8 succinctly puts it, meditating on the word daily will produce good success and make you prosperous. There is nothing that rinks lack fruit that a man that is without knowledge of the word of God. Another perfect example is Goliath; he was hefty, but he was empty of the word and that was what gave ‘little’ David an edge over him.
- EDUCATE YOUR MIND: Being spiritually knowledgeable and intellectually bereft is not God’s plan for us. Spend time, to acquire knowledge, read books, watch the news to educate your mind. I try to ensure I read at least one book per day, and I am also taking my master’s degree in psychology and ethics because knowledge evolves and we should ensure we are not left in the old way of thinking or practicing ministry. It is never too late to add to your knowledge 2 Pet. 1:5. As the book of proverbs says “The mind of the prudent acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge” Pro. 18:15.
- INVEST IN PEOPLE: This is the best way to bear fruit and impact lives. When you invest in people, you are sowing seeds that will bear fruits because there is a saying I love so much and it goes; thus, ‘we are lifted so we can lift others.’ The best legacy you can give to someone is to invest in them and what other way to invest other than to believe in them. Our Lord Jesus Christ spent 3 and a half years of His ministry investing in the lives of his disciples and we as Christians are the fruits of this investment.
- FULFIL YOUR GOD-GIVEN PURPOSE: There is nothing more fulfilling and productive as doing that which God has sent you to do. I knew a long time ago what God’s purpose was for me on earth and I did not waste any time in following that path today I have no regrets because I am successful not in relation to money or wealth but with regards to the fruits that have come out of my ministry, the souls that have been won to Christ, the lives that have been blessed, etc. If you do not know what your purpose is, spend some time in God’s presence today and ask Him to show you.
I hope you have been inspired today and you can also share with me some of the ways we can bear fruits (substance) not just leaves (appearance). Look beyond the leaves and search for the fruits!
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