John 15:5 – 8 (HCSB) “I am the vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in Me and I in him produces much fruit, because you can do nothing without Me. If anyone does not remain in Me, he is thrown aside like a branch and he withers. They gather them, throw them into the fire, and they are burned. If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you want and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this: that you produce much fruit and prove to be My disciples.”
In the 15th chapter of John, we read about Jesus being the true vine and us being the branches. As I continued to read, I couldn’t help but think about the trees in our yard. These trees have not been freshly planted. They have been around for a while, perhaps longer than my house. During storms or windy days, branches can fall from tree. If the branch is still covered with leaves, the leaves look very much alive. But what happens over the course of a few days is the leaves become dry and brown. They die because the branch isn’t attached to the “life source” anymore.
The same is true for us. In this chapter of John, Jesus is the true vine and we are the branches. If we fall off (or fall away) from the vine, we will wither away and die (spiritually). We can do NOTHING apart from Christ.
“A branch cannot produce fruit alone but must remain on the vine.” (John 15:4) “In the same way you (meaning us) must remain in the vine (remain in Christ).”
“Remain in me and I will remain in you.” But how do we remain? We follow Him even when things get tough and it feels like He’s not even around. We obey Him, even when obedience is not the most “popular thing” or the most “comfortable thing” to do. We accept the work He is doing in our lives and grow.
So where are you at this moment? Are you attached to the vine and flourishing or are you withering away?
May I challenge you today to remain in Christ… step out in faith and take one step closer to Him. Find out what he has put you here to do and do it, all for His honor and glory.