There is an interesting verse in Isaiah.
31 And the remnant who have escaped of the house of Judah Shall again take root downward, And bear fruit upward. Isaiah 37:31 (NKJV)
I want to look at the principle embodied in this verse rather than the context, although the context is about a people not a plant, because the principle underlies what spiritual fruit is produced in our lives.
The principle embodied is that of being rooted downward to bear fruit upward. Think of agriculture. Have you ever observed a farmer’s field after it has been sown? You look across and see soil and neat furrows. Over a period of time if there is sufficient water and sunlight you begin to see green shoots appear and they grow and produce seed according to whatever has been planted. What we don’t see is what is happening beneath the soil. Before that first little green shoot appears the seed has been busy. The seed germinated and cracked open and a little green tendril appeared. All unseen to those of us observing the field. Yet without this process nothing green would appear on the surface. The roots nurture and give life to the rest of the plant.
As the plant grows all may appear to be going well but if something attacks or affects the root system you will begin to see the plant wither and eventually die. The plant cannot survive and produce fruit without a healthy root system.
So what is the spiritual application? If we are to produce good spiritual fruit we need to embrace what Paul taught.
14 For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, 16 that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, 17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height– 19 to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3:14-19 (NKJV)
6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love. Galatians 5:6 (NKJV)
These verses tell us that to function effectively we need our lives rooted and grounded in the love of Jesus so that we can effectively walk out our faith. Our part is to ask the Holy Spirit to strengthen our inner being to experience and live out of the love of Christ. The more we experience the more we release and the more His life (the fruit we want) is revealed through our lives.
Father, help us to develop deep roots and true fruits.