The Pear Tree
By Sherrie Brouhard
In the spring, the blossoms of the pear tree were beautiful. All summer we noticed the tree, as it was covered with little pears. I observed them on a regular basis, and a couple times picked one, noting it was too hard, and that we should just wait a little longer before picking them. After all, none were falling on the ground yet, as the apples were from a nearby apple tree.
One day I noticed the first few pears had fallen. By the time I got out to the tree to start picking, a storm came up. It rained most of the weekend and I did not get to pick the fruit. The first of the next week was busy, so once again, no time to make it out to the backyard. Meanwhile, I noticed more fruit on the ground below the tree.
Finally, I went out there to pick the fruit. To my dismay, I found that not only were many pears on the ground below the tree, as I began to pick pears from the branches, many were overripe. Throughout the time I was picking pears, others continued to fall to the ground. Others on the tree were so overripe that bees were swarming around them. I was so disappointed that they had gotten to this point before I could get out there and pick them. I hated the waste of losing ripe delicious fruit.
The sun went down, and it got too dark to finish retrieving the remaining usable pears. Later in the evening, I found myself thinking regretfully about losing so many pears. I kept thinking of how only a week before, it was not too late, and if only I had managed to take the time, so many would not be lost. It was such a disappointment to see the fruit, some practically rotted away on the branches, others falling to the ground.
As I reflected on this with disappointment and thoughts of how it would be another year before there would be more pears, a thought came to my mind. What about the people in our lives? The loved ones around us - some aging, others with different needs, people we come in contact with. Am I that concerned about missing an opportunity to reach someone for Jesus? All around us, there are people. There are people who will drop off the face of this earth, who we may never see again. Sometimes people move away, and we never see each other again. There are so many that we may interact with through our time here on earth. Do we sense the urgency of the harvest? Do we feel the anxiousness in our hearts, to reach them while there is time? Are we as concerned for lost souls, as we are about trivial unimportant things that slip through our fingers?
It came to me how very troubled I was, at the idea of the lost and wasted fruit; fruit that could have been preserved and served to family, and shared with others. All around us, there are people ripe for the harvest. Are we reaching out to them in time? Is that our concern? Or are we caught up in our little disappointments and not sensing the reality of our mission?
You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. John 15:16
Sherrie Brouhard is happily married to her husband, Clint, and has three grown sons. She is a church musician, homeschooled for twenty years, and is now working as a tutor. Send your comments to Sherrie
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