An old street evangelist gave us a lemon tree that he had grown from a seed. It was pretty much just one stem with a few leaves and it was about two feet tall. Our land can get saturated in wet summers, so knowing that citrus does not do well in saturated ground, I looked for the highest spot I could find. I planted the tree in a slight berm along an edge of our property. I used organic fertilizer and I carefully chose insecticides and other home remedies that are organic. Every year, I trimmed it a little to encourage more fruit and I have been careful to water it regularly. Finally, when it was a few years old, there was some fruit and it was ready to harvest. Fresh lemon juice! I couldn’t wait.
It was horrible. It did not taste like lemon and, worse, it tasted like gasoline! True Story!
I couldn’t figure it out. Maybe it was because it was a young tree and it needed to mature. Next year, same results. Yuck! The next year, it tasted “citrussy” but not like a lemon and it still tasted a little like gasoline. I figured I was just associating the memory of what it used to taste like. Reason was put aside, the evidence not believed. I kept nurturing the tree and another year went by. The taste of gas was no longer in the fruit but it still didn’t look nor taste like lemons. So weird.
Finally, it dawned on me.
Several years previous to our receiving the citrus tree, we changed our own oil a time or two. There was nowhere to put the used oil, so we decided to bury it in the back yard. We did that two or three times, burying it in a new place each time. The oil was deep and grass grew over the top. A few years went by, the oil in the ground was forgotten.
I’m sure you guessed it! I planted that tree in one of the spots where we had buried the oil. The oil was deeper than the young tree’s hole, so I didn’t notice anything odd.
By the time the tree was bearing fruit for about 5 years, it no longer tasted like gasoline. I finally took the fruit to a local nursery and he laughed when he recognized the fruit. “Persian lime.” Oh, ok! Of course! It didn’t look like a lemon and didn’t taste like a lemon, so it must not be a lemon! I had put reason away simply because I had been told it was a lemon. It was a lemon tree-but only in my mind!
This story is continued tomorrow.
Dear Lord, Is there anything in my life that could be masquerading as one thing but it’s really not what it is said to be? Would you show me the foundation beneath that “thing”.
Listen to God’s answer and continue listening to Him. He will show you.
Job 29:20 But God understands the way to wisdom,
and he knows its location. CSB