View From the Front Row

Fruit and Nuts
By Jerry Hoops
God’s unique design of the universe and the way Jesus taught the people, including His disciples, through the use of nature and the way it was interwoven in the physical realm to explain spiritual concepts is amazing.

I served on a church board with a wise older farmer/rancher who had a spread on the east side of the Sacramento Valley in the era of World War II. He knew the Bible intimately and had a way about bringing Biblical concepts to light that were relevant for today. One such concept was from Ecclesiastes 3:1 “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens,” where this dairyman used the very heavenly design of God to illustrate this teaching.

You must understand the agricultural concepts of growing crops on the east side of the Sacramento Valley. In the winter time there are days and days upon weeks and weeks upon months and months of fog that lay in the valley north of Sacramento. This inversion layer of fog is nature’s refrigerator that causes the trees and buds to lay in a state of dormancy. Without this phenomena the fruit of peach, plum, nectarine, and other fruit and nut bearing trees would never bring forth fruit, because the buds would never have a chance to set.

Another unique feature that my friend and mentor pointed out is the blueprint that God designed where every species of tree, grain, and animal had a particular season in which it conceived, bloomed, matured, gave birth, or required attention. You see, one poor farmer or rancher would be overcome with work if all the variety of trees bloomed at the same time. What about spraying or where to move bee hives for pollination? Don’t forget the pruning of limbs and fertilization of the soil to add nutrients. There just wouldn’t be enough hours in the day to accomplish all those tasks.

But as the writer of Ecclesiastes said, “there is a season for every activity under the heavens.” God has a plan for our lives and He has a plan to restore us to Himself. That plan is His Son Jesus Christ. There was a season leading up to the birth of Jesus where prophets foretold his birth. There was a season prior to the ministry of Jesus where He matured in wisdom and stature. There was the ministry and death of Jesus where the lame rose and ran, and the blind received sight, and He proclaimed that He was the Son of God prior to his death. And finally, there was the season of the resurrection of Jesus. Now we are in the season of living with the risen Jesus and are awaiting His return.

Remember that today many things have gone on before to bring you to this place in space and time. Embrace the season you are in knowing that the Author and Finisher of your faith is also the Architect of the master design plan, including the fog in the valley of your life that you may be currently passing through.