There is a time in a man’s life when he must act—when he must seize the day. There are moments of opportunity; there are simple chances to do things—an opening to produce something really worthwhile. And when you let those moments pass, they never come your way again. It’s a deep lesson, a profound lesson, and I think it lies at the root of a curious incident in Jesus’ ministry.
In Matthew 21, Jesus is staying near Jerusalem in a little town called Bethany. He was on his way into Jerusalem early in the morning, and he was hungry. As he walked along the way he saw a fig tree, the season was such that there should have been fruit on it. He walked over to it, looked for fruit, and found nothing but leaves. And he said to it,
Let no fruit grow on you again forever and the fig tree withered away.
Now, that seems to me like a strange thing for Jesus to do, and I don’t think he would have done—nor Matthew recorded it—it unless there was a lesson for his disciples and all of us to learn from it. There are times when you and I ought to be producing something—putting something out. And if we don’t do so, then our time will pass and we will never get the opportunity again. Jesus developed a theme not unlike this in the 13th chapter of Luke…