“Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” — John 15:4-5
Grass springs up out of the ground until it reaches our knees. Vines grow up and over fences. Trees climb 30 feet high and higher, as if they are reaching for the skies. Branches spread outward further and further over the months and years, until they cover large areas and scatter seeds to produce more plants.
What about us? Are we learning and growing every day as a Christian?
When we plant a tree, we should dig a deep hole and make the hole twice as broad as the base of the seedling before we put the dirt back in the hole and start watering it. A strong root system is necessary for long-term health for plants. A seedling is like a new Christian. “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness” (Colossians 2:6-7).
As time goes by, we need to stay humble and continue to be mindful of our need for God, just as vegetation requires nutrients, water and sunlight. As a broken branch quickly loses life, we need constant connection to Christ. Jesus said, “Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:4-5).
If we neglect our spiritual field, then it fills up with weeds and briers. The Lord wants us to give careful attention to our spiritual growth. We should stretch toward Heaven while we live on earth. When we gain spiritual nourishment through Scripture, then we honor Christ and pour out spiritual fruit into our families and communities. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law” (Galatians 5:22-23).
— Bill Kent, Pastor of Memorial Baptist Church, Sylvania, Georgia
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