“Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:4-5).
As ideal as it may seem to live near a good winery, imagine nesting yourself right in the middle of a vineyard. Attaching yourself to the vine, living among the branches and watching the fruit grow. It’s a dream come true for those of us who love wine.
This is also the definition of a healthy Christian life. The first and most important thing is to make sure you are firmly attached to the vine—and make sure that vine is Jesus and not a man or a group. Second, live among the branches—spend time with others who are also firmly attached to the vine. Third, watch the fruit grow—in you and in others. Finally, leave the comfort of the nest to reach out to others—sharing the love and life of Jesus with others—knowing your home is always attached to the vine.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, help me always see you as the true vine. Help me desire to stay attached to you at all times. And when my desire wanes, help me desire to desire. Thank you for being the vine that gives life; thank you for abiding in me. Lord, as you grow in me, help me share your love and life with others. In your name, Amen.
By Rick Shallenberger
Regional Director, USA North Central