Sunday, 9 July 2017

Fruitfully Barren

Recently I heard  lady talking about her own struggle with infertility and something of what she said really resounded in my soul. She talked about how she has chosen to be ‘Fruitfully Barren’

Fruitfully Barren


Is sounds a bit like a paradox doesn’t it?! How can someone barren; i.e.
  1.        not producing or incapable of producing offspring; sterile
  2.        unproductive; unfruitful:
  3.        without capacity to interest or attract:
  4.        mentally unproductive; dull; stupid.
  5.        not producing results; fruitless:
  6.       destitute; bereft; lacking (usually followed by of):

be fruitful; i.e.

  1.        producing good results; beneficial; profitable:fruitful investigations.
  2.        abounding in fruit, as trees or other plants; bearing fruit abundantly.
  3.        producing an abundant growth, as of fruit :fruitful soil; fruitful rain.


But as I considered this further I came to see the beauty in it and I realised that being fruitfully barren is exactly what I want to be until the day that I am either no longer barren or I get to party in heaven!

The bible is rich in imagery of what being fruitful looks like, and as I have started studying I found that a lot of the ‘fruitful verses’ talked about the need to be connected to the vine or sat by the river. At a recent Salvation Army event called the Big Sunday we looked at Ezekiel 47 and I haven’t been able to get it out of my mind since. In it are some beautiful words about the living waters making life fruitful.

“Fruit trees of all kinds will grow along both sides of the river. The leaves of these trees will never turn brown and fall, and there will always be fruit on their branches. There will be a new crop every month, for they are watered by the river flowing from the Temple. The fruit will be for food and the leaves for healing”  V12

Our divisional commander spoke about vision both for our church but also us personally, and I have claimed this as a vision for my seemingly Barren circumstance. Verse 9 is the verse I will cling to in the search for what being fruitfully barren might mean:

“Life will flourish wherever this water flows.

So, Today, as I sit in the park and see a mum cuddling a newborn baby, and watch children playing on the slide. I do not feel sorrow, or jealousy or bitterness (Thank the Lord!) but I feel Joy! Joy because I choose (and it’s not easy!) to be fruitfully barren and rest by the streams of living water.




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