Singing About Fruit

I’ll be singing about fruit in the Nashville area next Wednesday night. Otter Creek Church of Christ in Brentwood, Tennessee is hosting a series of concerts/conversations all about what Christians call the “fruit of the Spirit.”

I know a little about fruit.  We have peach trees in our backyard.  I know they’re peach trees because of what they make: peaches.  I know they’re peaches because they’re furry, tart, sweet, pitted, yellow and deep red and light orange.  That’s what a peach is.

The bible says that Christians are people attached to God, connected to the Him like fruit on a tree.  They grow and live because the Spirit of God flows from the tree through the branches and into the Christian who really, like a peach, can do no growing or maturing on her own.  A Christian is the fruit of God, so to speak – what HE makes.  And that fruit – a Christian – has certain qualities.  Just as certainly as a peach has fuzz, a person connected to God has love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

Next Wednesday night I’m supposed to pick one of those attributes and sing songs that have something to do with it.  And a preacher guy – a professor of something at a university in town, actually – will be leading a discussion of that attribute and how my music relates to it.  No pressure.  So between now and then I need to figure out what words like “love” and “kindness” mean as they’re used in this part of the bible.

I have this fear of putting words in God’s mouth.  The word “peace,” for instance, can mean “no conflict between individuals” or it can mean “wholeness in all parts.” Big difference.  The difference between me singing “Peace Has Broken Out” or “Welcome Home.” The word “gentleness” can mean “bridled, under the control of a master” or it can mean “soft.” So I could sing “White Flag” or “Damage Done.”

And it’s not just about determining which songs I sing; it’s about expressing accurately what a Christian is.  That’s a pretty weighty task for a musician (a post for another time). A Christian is not in conflict with anyone else or a Christian is becoming whole or both?  A Christian is a slave to God or nice to be around or both?

Show up next Wednesday at Otter Creek Church of Christ to find out if I found any answers…and to bring answers and questions of your own.  It’s supposed to be one hour of back-and-forth.  See you there.