Years ago my father came to visit me in Utah. He reprimanded me for not planting in my yard. He told me that whatever chance he gets, he plants whatever he can. When the time for harvest comes, he said, “I have plenty to share.” From boyhood to now I witness my father planting. Even if the land isn’t his, if it’s sitting idle, he’ll take license and clear out the lot, soften the ground, and plant his starter plants. As a boy, we planted over a hundred banana trees in the vacant field next door. This past summer, I went home to visit, and my father and my youngest brother were across the street digging, planting, and trying to build a well for water to feed the trees they’d just planted. I suppose my dad had the ability to see growth where most would never try.
My dad somehow obtained a mango tree-start years earlier, and wanted to plant it in his yard, in hopes that the fruit from that tree would be plentiful to share with all his family.
The tree took root. Branches sprouted and leaves grew, showing signs of maturity. Knowing that fruit typically doesn’t show up for a few years, there was no expectation to partake of harvest any time soon. Year followed year and soon it was four years old, many branches and lots of leaves, but no fruit. My dad pruned the center of the tree, to let sun into the center of the tree, and waited for the next few seasons, continuously nourishing it, with an expected harvest, but nothing came.
In the seventh year, frustrated with no crop, my dad was about to cut the mango tree down. However, one fruit appeared. That’s the end of the parable.
As we learn the attributes, perfections and characteristics of God, we will be able to see clearly the mind and will of God through the words of Christ. God promises a fruit sweeter than sweet Hawaiian mango. The fruit is described as, sweet above all that is sweet, white above all that is white and pure above all that is pure, and if a man partake, he shall never hunger nor thirst (Alma 32: 42).
Christ does the heavy lifting. All we do is receive Him. As we know God and Christ, we will obtain the gifts of the spirit more fully, even partake of that precious fruit. He desires our return. Rise up oh man of God.