Outward appearance does not count with God. Instead, what really counts is whether or not one produces godly fruit in his or her life.
Jesus' cursing of the fig tree has puzzled and even disturbed Bible readers for centuries, as it just does not seem to be something our Savior would do.
Jesus cursed the fig tree because it lacked fruit and produced only leaves. It symbolized pharisaical hypocrisy, where works and talk are not in alignment.
God is a God of mercy, but He has a stiff core of justice which will not be placated unless we repent. To whom much has been given, much will be required.
Constant, earnest prayer keeps faith alive and makes certain the receiving of the qualities that make us in the image of God. God's purpose comes first.