I had the good fortune to grow up in one house. My family never moved. My parents, to this day, live in the same house I said my first word in. That said, I’m rather familiar with the landscape around my parents’ house. I know every tree and what type of tree it is. We have peach trees, we have pecan trees, azalea bushes, rose bushes, crate myrtles, blackberry bushes…. You get the idea.
So, for the longest time, we had two trees on one side of our house that never bloomed nor showed any fruit. One, my father always told me, was a peach tree and the other a pecan tree. But neither, in 20 years time, ever showed any fruit. I glanced over there this previous Spring and I saw peaches on the peach tree. I asked my father, “How’d you get the peach tree to bloom?” He answered, “I cut down the pecan tree.”
Now, when I first looked over there, I did not notice the tree that was missing, but just the fruit that had miraculously showed up. You see, the trees were fighting over the limited resources in the ground. Therefore, neither tree could get enough nutrients to produce the fruit it was meant for. So, eventually, this meant one of the trees had to go.
In Mark 11, we see a spot in scripture where Jesus does something very similar…
He sees a fig tree and he’s hungry. But when He goes up to the fig tree, there is no fruit on it. In His disappointment, Jesus curses the fig tree and says, “No one shall eat any fruit of you ever again.” A few days later, Jesus and the disciples walk by the same fig tree and it has withered and died.
Now, let’s take a look at these two examples of trees that bear no fruit from a leadership point of view. How many trees in your life are you putting a lot of resources in to? These “trees” can be relationships, investments or employees. Now, we all know we have limited resources, financially speaking. But, we also have limited resources in our relational environments. You cannot be everyone’s “go-to” guy. You will burn out. You cannot be everyone’s best friend. You will begin to resent people.
So, what am I saying? Just be careful about where you spend your most valuable resources. Only invest in trees that bear good fruit.
This blog post was short, but I think it said a lot. Good day.