Once upon a time a hen and pig out wondering the country side came upon a church and paused for a moment to read the sign out front that read: “What can you do to help the poor?”
Immediately the hen suggested that they could feed them bacon and eggs. The pig thought for a moment and said, “There is only one thing wrong with feeding bacon and eggs to the poor, for you it requires only a contribution, for me it requires a total commitment.”
God is not asking us to be hens (to only make a contribution.) God wants us to be PIGS! What God expects is total commitment.
Jesus today gives us a parable to ponder, and in the parable the owner of a barren fig tree says to the gardener, “Cut it down, why should it keep using up the soil?" And the gardener answers: "Give it another year, sir. Let me put fertilizer around it, then if it bears fruit, that would be great! If not, well, then you can cut it down."
Here again comes that uneasy Lenten feeling which the gospel keeps confronting us with; for, you see, in this parable we are the barren fig tree…...we are the one's expected to be doing more than just occupying space in the vineyard. All have fallen short. We are all in the position of the fig tree which Jesus speaks about. We have not consistently produced enough fruit to justify taking up the ground that we occupy, we are a waste of good soil. But the gardener pleads for us, “Don’t cut it down just yet. Let me care for it and nourish it, and maybe next year it will bear fruit.”
We deserve to have been cut down long age, but the good news is, we are being pruned and fertilized for yet another season. Because of God’s mercy, we have been given another year, one more chance to turn from barrenness-to-fruitfulness. All God asks of us is that we be pigs―that we totally commit to being the best fig tree we can be.