There’s no question that peaches are my favorite fruit. Raspberries come a close second (we grew both at my childhood home in Albuquerque, NM), but a freshly picked, tree-ripened peach is my favorite—and as I type this, I’ve just finished snacking on one as a pre-lunch treat.

You see, Henry and I recently took a day trip to Apple Annie’s Orchard in Willcox, two hours east of our house. It was an opportunity to take photographs of the unusually green desert during monsoon season and also for me to pick as many tree-ripened peaches as I wanted. I went overboard, as the photo above indicates, and have spent the past week making peach jam (using a treasured recipe from my Aunt Fran), peach chutney, peach BBQ sauce, and peach cobbler, and freezing more peaches for other recipes (including a favorite gingerbread upside down cake) when winter arrives.

As I chopped peaches and cut out bruised spots (because, of course, I piled ripe peaches three-deep in the boxes and then trundled them along rocky dirt paths—oops!), I pondered the joy I find in connecting more closely with God’s abundant creation. While picking peaches, I came across many insects who were also enjoying the ripe fruit. As we drove home, the smell of the peaches filled the car. Our kitchen has also smelled like peaches for the past week. It almost(!) rivals my joy in the smell of rain as the monsoon season is in full swing.

As Jesus taught, we are known by our fruits. He talked about grapes and figs, so I’m guessing he never tasted a fresh, ripe peach. (A bit of online research reveals that peaches originated in China, were taken to Persia along the Silk Road, and then came to the Roman Empire via trade by Jesus’ lifetime—but I bet they were beyond the financial reach of a rural itinerant carpenter-teacher and his followers!)

I’m reminded of how we can also get out of touch with our fruitfulness in the midst of over-full lives. I’ve blogged before about how we can get so busy we leave unharvested fruit on our trees (both literal and metaphorical).

So, I ask: What fruits have you been known for in the course of your life? What abundance are you conscientious about sharing? What fruits are perhaps languishing on your own literal and spiritual trees right now?

Also, when did you last mindfully pause to fully enjoy a precious piece of ripe fruit?

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