20When the disciples saw this, they were amazed. "How did the fig tree wither so quickly?" they asked.
21Jesus replied, "I tell you the truth, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, 'Go, throw yourself into the sea,' and it will be done. 22If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer." Matthew 21:19-22
I know I talked about the fig tree not that long ago, but it's on my mind this morning, so I must need to talk about it again. Actually there are a few things on my mind, but they are all similar, and all related to Jesus cursing the fig tree.
See, the other night we had our first real storm of the season- tornado warnings and all. Our church body has been spending a lot of time learning about the power of our words. Had Jesus experienced a tornado in his time here on earth, no doubt He would have looked at the tornado and commanded it to dissipate. Well, many of our church members got to put that into practice. One of these tornadoes, in particular, the national weather service has indicated that it actually didn't happen, because they can find no evidence of it. But the truth is, friends of ours watched this tornado forming from their front yard, and commanded it to dissipate, and it did that very thing. The damage caused by other tornadoes in the area was very minimal, because so many pointed to the sky and commanded the storm to go away. And that it did. It moved very quickly off to the west, leaving no damage in its wake.
But what makes me think of the fig tree withering is the fact that I have a massive garden full of weeds. And not just any weeds, an invasive, vining variety that is all but impossible to kill. It has taken me literally hours to weed just a small portion of it, and I have a long, long way to go. Last night as Andy and I were discussing our options for trying to rid ourselves of this horrendous Bishop's Weed, these verses about the fig tree came to mind. Now, I did manage to use some weed killer on one small 3-foot section of the weeds. They promptly began to wither, but then I ran out of the weed killer. I couldn't help but think last night about my success with blessing my tomato plants. If my words could cause plants to grow vibrantly and bear abundant fruit. Can my words not also cause plants to wither?
I intend to put my words where my mouth is. Literally. Later today, as I head out to the garden to pull more weeds, I intend to use the very same words that Jesus did, and curse the weeds that are trying to take over my yard. Now, I know I'll still have to go around and pull all the weeds out, but by cursing them, and using the faith I have in me, I know that I can cause those weeds to never come back. I won't have to worry about little root pieces hanging back and creating new weeds, because my words have power! I do not doubt that I can cause these weeds to let go of my yard. After all, my garden is blessed, God put it there just for me, and He didn't put it there so that I can watch weeds take over. He put it there for me to enjoy, so that I can grow wonderful vegetables and other edibles.
Jesus says right there that I can do exactly what He did to the fig tree, and then so much more. While I may not be looking to cast any mountains into the sea today, I do intend to take the baby steps and cause my fig tree to wither. With faith the size of a mustard seed, I can do that very thing.