The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he who wins souls is wise.” Proverbs 11:30

Pastor Tom Carey is not Jewish. He is a nice Italian man who grew up in a Catholic home. Yet if you speak with him for any significant length of time, he will inform you that he has a Jewish mother. How could this be? Well, it has to do with fruit.

I spoke at Tom’s church recently and he introduced me to his “Jewish mother,” Golda Lucas. He calls her his mother because she led him to the Lord. It was rather humorous to see Pastor Tom, who is in his early fifties, calling Golda his mother. She’s the same age! After I spoke, she shared her story with the church.

Golda began seeking the truth about Jesus some twenty years ago. Someone pointed her in the direction of a Messianic congregation. When Golda walked in one Friday, the only person there was the janitor. He told her that a very special singing group would be performing at the congregation the following day. The name of the group was The Liberated Wailing Wall, and he told her that they were all Jews for Jesus. Golda was thrilled to hear of this event and showed up the next day in great anticipation to see the presentation.

It was at that meeting that she finally found the answer to all her questions when she heard that one could indeed be Jewish and believe in Jesus. That evening she surrendered her life to the Lord and put her faith in Jesus as her Messiah and Savior. Her life was never the same.

Later she met Tom, shared her faith with him and he in turn gave his life to Jesus. Golda and her husband spent a great deal of time teaching Tom and investing in him so that he would also be fruitful for God. And they see the fruit of his life today as he is pastoring a vibrant, growing congregation in Long Island, New York. Part of his desire to see the gospel go forth in his community led pastor Tom to invite Jews for Jesus to come and speak at his church. His “Jewish mother” instilled in him a desire to see God’s chosen people come to faith in their Messiah, and now he is passing on that passion to his congregation and his community. How is that for coming full circle? And isn’t that the way it is supposed to work in the body of Christ? We all work together to reach out and touch lives and then those people in turn bear fruit and the cycle continues on and on. May all our lives be like a tree of life, bearing fruit and winning souls for the Lord!