Becoming Who You Already Are

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I’ve been dreaming about planting tomatoes, so my mind immediately went to raised beds and seedlings when this passage came up in church last weekend:

“You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.

You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.” {Matthew 5:13-16}

Jesus had barely just plucked his disciples from their ordinary lives with His invitation to “follow me” when He was preaching this first ever recorded sermon on the mountainside.  They had no clue what was in store for them or the world for that matter.  They were just barely beginning to understand who Jesus was. This man who was announcing what he was calling “Good News” about the kingdom. This rabbi who possessed power to heal all kinds of diseases and illnesses - he healed them all. It is written.

As they sat at his feet, hungering to know more, he spoke this over them and He still speaks it over us today:

You are.

This is what I love about Jesus.  He leads us to become who we already are.

The disciples hadn’t done anything remarkable yet. They were just watching, following and learning. Yet even later on when they did certain wonderful things, they were still like you and I… fighting against their old ways and learning to walk in the new. And regardless of what they did or didn’t do… regardless of what you and I have done or not done, Jesus says, “You are.”

When a tomato plant begins to fruit, the little yellow blossoms develop green buds that grow until full size. A little water and a lot of light ripens the fruit and as the light shines, the fruit gradually goes from green to red, from hard to soft, from sour to sweet… to the way it was always intended to be enjoyed.

But here’s the truth: In it’s budding, green and unripened state, a tomato is still a tomato.

It never stops being a tomato. The more it is exposed to the light, the more it becomes what it already is. The more it is exposed to the warmth and the radiance of the sun, the sweeter and juicier it becomes and the more it enhances the salad it’s tossed into.

Next time you slice up a yummy tomato, drizzle a little oil on it and don’t forget the salt! As that sweet taste of summer takes hold of your taste buds, let it remind you of who you already are.

For by grace you have been saved through faith.

And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,

not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” {Ephesians 2:8-9}

 

Comments

  1. Linda Massey says:

    Thank you, Suzie, for the reminder of who I already am in Christ. I am content being a “green tomato” because I know Jesus is leading me to be all He created me to be and He promises to finish what He started in me. I love that about Jesus too. He sees who I am, not what I was or what I am not, and His view of me is not based on my works. I am His, and I want to keep abiding in Him.

  2. The Lord always gives you a word “in Season” that ministers to my heart at just the right time. I’m so grateful our Lord loves us so much and is so great that He speaks to us is such specific ways. Thank you for sharing.

  3. Gardener’s know that part of the growth process with tomatoes also involves “hardening” them up–slowly exposing your seedlings to the elements they will have to adjust to in order to bear fruit. I think God does the same…so even before fruit we can remember those seasons are part of the process.

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