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GRAPEFRUIT…a strange name to me since a grape is a very small fruit whereas the grapefruit is many times larger. It’s officially ‘citrus x paradisi’. It is a sub-tropical citrus tree known for its sour to semi-sweet fruit. It’s a half-breed originating in Barbados as an accidental cross between two introduced species, sweet orange and pomelo or shaddock, both of which came from Asia in the 17th century. When found, it was named the ‘forbidden fruit’. Count Odet Phillipe brought the grapefruit to Florida in 1823.
Then of course the Ruby Red and other ‘reds’ were created. My first experience was in 1970 when I arrived in Dallas with my family. I had always eaten the white grapefruit. That’s when I fell in love with ‘red’. And they are great for you. Some people have to have one each day. I find adding a little salt really nails the taste! Fresh squeezed grapefruit juice is always special. In season it is the very best! I love the challenge of shopping for them to try to choose the most juicy and delicious ones. It’s all in the ‘feel’!
As I thought about that, it led me to think seriously about appearances. Am I simply dressed for show on the outside with no flavor on the inside? There is the expression; ‘don’t judge a book by its cover.’ Same with grapefruit, and us believers, too! When you are ‘squeezed’ so to speak, under pressure, the true content comes forth. As long as I am lying there on the produce shelf; man, I appear fresh and appealing. But, is that the true me?
What’s in the heart of the grapefruit determines its real essence, 
not the peel.

Maybe half-breed applies also. Are you a mixture of the world and God’s truth? What part prevails; the sour or the semi-sweet? You know, it all depends on what is going into your mind that determines what comes out of you. Jesus said; “For out of the heart come evil thoughts-murder, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander” (Mt. 15:19 NIV). Familiar with any of those? I am, too often! Your mind controls your heart.

That grapefruit is absolutely no better than the nutrients introduced from the roots through its branches. Paul tells us in Romans; “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (vs. 12:2a NIV).
“He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior” (Titus 3:5,6 NIV).
Just like a grapefruit, you are being produced, not by your efforts but by his grace working in us. The more obedient you are, the more ‘juicy and tasty’ you become to others. People will be attracted to you, and that in turn will draw them to the Jesus in you.
You remember, I said I added a little salt to my grapefruit to enhance its taste? Salt is one of the ingredients Jesus asked us to be in this world. Maybe you should stop conforming and go against the grain-by getting out of your shaker and pouring out some of your salt on others who are in need. Who knows, they just might taste and like it. It’s worth a try don’t you think!
Copyright 2016
Bill C. Dotson

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