Jesus said, “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vineyard keeper. Every branch in Me that does not produce fruit He removes, and He prunes every branch that produces fruit so that it will produce more fruit. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in Me, and I in you. Just as a branch is unable to produce fruit by itself unless it remains on the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in Me.
“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.” (John 15:1-8 HCSB)
As you remain in Christ…
you are connected…
to an unlimited supply…
of whatever you need…
to do everything God wants you to do.
Think about that for a minute. As you remain in Christ, you are connected to an unlimited supply of whatever you need, to do everything God wants you to do. Jesus is God-in-the-flesh. He is the great “I AM.” He is the source of everything you have every needed, everything you need now, and everything you will ever need.
You need encouragement? He will encourage you.
You need strength to endure a hardship? He will give you strength.
You need wisdom on an important decision to make? He is your wisdom.
You need creativity? He is your inspiration.
You need words to say, to tell someone you care about how much God loves them? Jesus will give you the words to share with them.
Just like a branch on a vine does not produce fruit on its own but rather draws its nutrients from its source – the vine – in the same way Jesus is the source for everything you need. He is not the source for everything you want. He is the source for everything you need. When you realize this, it will affect you in many ways.
It will affect your focus. You will focus each day on how God is at work in your life. Like the first disciples, you will go through each day thinking about the Lord, thinking about what Jesus was like in every situation, learning from him, depending on his guidance, praying to God, and thinking about the Scriptures. You will focus on abiding with Christ, living for Christ, dwelling on Christ, remaining in Christ. In a very real way, you will walk each day with Jesus, knowing he is with you 24/7.
It will affect what you do. You will realize that you are not just on planet earth to exist. God put you here to bear fruit. In John 15:1-8 (above), you will see that God wants you to bear fruit, to bear more fruit, and to bear much fruit. The kind of fruit you produce is determined by your source. An apple tree produces apples. A pear tree produces pears. A follower of Christ will produce the same kind of fruit that Jesus produced: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control. And followers of Christ will lead other people to become followers of Christ.
It will affect how you pray. When you remain in Christ, you will begin to pray the kinds of prayers that God wants you to pray. By that I mean that as you talk to God in prayer and listen to the Lord as he speaks to your heart and mind, you will begin to have the heart and mind of Christ in every situation. Then, you can pray whatever you want and it will be answered for you. The reason this is true is that when Jesus is the source of your prayers, you will pray the things that God wants you to pray. For example, you might pray, “Lord, help me to forgive so-and-so for how they have hurt me.” And the Lord will surely help you with that!
It will affect how you view discipline. When you are connected to the vine – Jesus – your source – then you will realize that discipline is not punishment. Discipline is pruning. God is pruning away the parts of us that are hurtful, the parts that stunt our growth and fruit-producing capabilities. When you realize that Jesus is your source, you won’t be mad, confused or discouraged when the Lord disciplines you. Rather, you will be encouraged, knowing that the Lord loves you enough to prune away the hurtful attitudes, behaviors, words, thinking, and actions that are in your life.
It will affect how you view God. You will see that he is your source. He is your strength. He is your supply. He is NOT just someone to take for granted, or ignore, or call upon only during difficult times. He is your very life, the one you depend on for everything you need. Jesus is your source for every good thing.
PRAYER: “Lord, help me to remember that you are my source. Just like a branch produces fruit by depending on the vine and remaining on the vine, in the same way I will produce spiritual fruit as I depend on Christ and remain in him. Help me to walk each day with you, very conscious that you are with me 24/7. May you produce fruit in me and through me so that I can impact people’s lives like Jesus did. Today, Lord, help me to spend this day focused on you.”