We’ve all enthusiastically started out on something and just when we hit what seems to be the first stumbling block, we are so discouraged that we are ready to give up. Right at the beginning of an obstacle or a challenge, we start questioning ourselves. We question whether we are cut out for what we’ve started. Our internal dialogue goes something like this:
"can I do really do this?"
"What was I thinking?"
"I don’t think I am the right person to be doing this. I’m so inadequate."
We tend to ponder so much on the negative that we find it would be easier to just give up. Of course giving up is easier when we don’t have a solid reason why we started in the first place. Sometimes we think of something and without much thought or consideration, we dive right into it. When we start out like this, because our foundation wasn’t metered and strengthened, it tends to be shaky. As a result, we are more prone to giving up on the cause without bearing much fruit. Other times, although we started out this way, we bear fruit but not to the magnitude we had hoped for. It’s like putting something out there on the socials, with the hopes that you will get likes and shares, but when that doesn’t transpire as you envisioned, you start questioning and invalidating yourself.
In this digital age where happenings on social media have come to define and influence what good, successful and worthy should look like, we’ve come to doubt ourselves, our abilities, and our purpose. When those in the social circles don’t validate what we do with likes and shares, we deem ourselves as unworthy people without influence.
We forget that God has already made us worthy and validated us. We forget that we are made in His image and by virtue of that, we are chosen. We have been chosen to bear fruit. No validation is greater than this! So, as we go about our way, navigating life in the quest to solidifying our foundations and living purpose-filled lives, let us remember that bearing fruit isn’t essentially about the numbers, it is about the quality of fruit we produce.
In a plan by Partners International available on the YouVersion App, called “Appointed to bear fruit”, the author encourages: "don't be discouraged if there are not a lot of people following your ministry. God only asks you to keep serving faithfully. Remember, Jesus’ ministry went from 5000 followers in John 6 down to 12 disciples, and one of them betrayed Him.”
The author expands further on this and says: “so often, because we want to be seen as successful, we try to get as many followers as possible. Somehow we think that others will notice how awesome we are. Because, as they say, success is numbers, right? But all of this is not God’s standard measure of success.”
This is just the tip-of-the-iceberg evidence that God measures success by quality not quantity. And as His children, we should abide by this principle and focus on quality outputs and impact. We should not demean or belittle our efforts just because only a “minority”, seems to acknowledge or pay attention to what we are doing. This measure of success is a deterrent to US being impactful fruit bearers. Let’s remember that God does not concern Himself with leaves, He concerns Himself with the fruit. Staying rooted in this truth will empower us with perseverance to enable us to bear the fruit we were made to bear. Remember this truth, when the going gets tough.
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