Are We Ripe or Rotting?

I was listening to some music the other day on my iPod and came across a song from my old punk rock days. Well, to be honest, I didn’t dress punk or anything, but I still loved listening to punk. Anyway, H2O is a punk band that I really enjoyed and they have a song called “Ripe or Rotting”. The music is high energy and the lyrics, yes you can understand them, are very strong.

Here are some of the lyrics:

“The clock is ticking but I’m rotting
Tell me are you rotting?
If you’re going to change just do it now
Are you ripe or rotting?
Only you can keep you down
Are you ripe or rotting?
If you’re going to change just do it now
Are you ripe or rotting?
Don’t want to deal with life and it makes you afraid
all the plans that you made
So much potential but you never see
Rotting away but you used to be ripe”

The fact of the matter is we need to be asking ourselves this question. Are we ripe or rotting? The junk we deal with on a regular basis can tear us apart and make us rot away, but we are meant to be ripe. We have allowed certain elements of life hinder our growth and our strength and we fail to ripen.

I bit into a rotten orange the other day and it was very gross. It was kind of deceptive because it was orange on the outside and didn’t have a foul odor, but the taste was definitely rotten. We as humans tend to cover our rot with good colors (i.e. clothes, makeup, jewelry, etc.) and we can mask our odor (perfume or cologne or deodorant…I like Gillette Gel). However, if someone were to look closely or into us they would find hurt and pain that is causing some form of rot within us.

At points in my life I have felt rotten, even in my walk with Christ, but I know that He has made me new. I no longer have to mask my rot because He knows where it is and is working on it regularly. I need to be connected to the One that makes me ripe. At least according to John 15:5 I need to stay connected to the vine in order to produce fruit, especially if I don’t want it to be rotten.

Paul speaks about fragrance in 2 Corinthians 2:14-16. He shares “But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place” (NIV). If we are rotting then our odor is going to be rough. However, if we are ripe and flowing in Christ then our fragrance or “sweet aroma” will be enjoyable and draw people near to the good news of Christ.

Am I ripe or rotting? I believe I am ripe. The only issue I have with H2O’s song is the fact that I can’t make myself change, it is through Christ that change comes.

The question I ask is what odor are you giving off? Are you masking your rot? Or are you ripe and allowing the “sweet aroma” to flow?

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