Lent reflection for 20 March
“It may bear fruit next year; if not, then you can cut it down.”
In the parable Jesus tells today, a fig tree fails to bear fruit. The owner wants to dig it up, but the gardener persuades him to keep it for another year, to nurture it and see if it can change.
This is like our relationship with God – God is always looking to give us another chance to change and to bear fruit.
And so today, let’s consider the times when we have got it wrong. When we have moved through the world in a way that has had a negative impact on others, whether deliberately or accidentally.
It could be down to our individual actions or because of our part in the systems and structures that define how the world works, who benefits and who loses out.
It is not always easy to admit our faults, but this is not about beating ourselves up. It is not about telling ourselves what terrible people we are. It is about recognising how we can grow.
Just as the gardener adds the manure and digs around the fruit tree, with God’s help we can try to create the right conditions for ourselves – and for our brothers and sisters throughout the world – to flourish.
So today, let us all examine the ways in which we can grow closer to those who are in need, and bear fruit in our world.
Merciful God, forgive us for the things that we have done wrong. Lead us to cultivate our relationships with more care, so that all your children may grow and bear the fruit of their potential. Amen.