THE INCREASE: Ikki Soma - Stay Connected

“I am the true vine, and My Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in Me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit He prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 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 15:1-5

Have you ever had to make an important call or do something important on your cell phone or laptop, only to discover that the battery is almost run down?

My mom had surgery recently, and I stayed in the hospital with her overnight to make sure she was OK. I brought my laptop with me to get some work done while she slept and recovered. After a few hours, my battery indicator flashed a warning that it was almost dead. I opened my bag to find that I didn’t bring my laptop charger. Even though I desired to get more work done, since my laptop wasn’t connected to a charger, no more work could get done.

In John 15:1 we see that Jesus is the vine and that Christians are the branches. Jesus Christ is the source of everything we need to become more like Him and to do what He has commanded us to do. It’s a very vivid illustration. I’ve never seen a branch on the side of the road that is healthy, growing and producing fruit. I’ve never seen a laptop or cellphone that can operate on its own.

We’re told in John 15:4-5 that we must stay relationally connected to Him if we are going to do anything eternal and significant for Him. If you desire to become more like Christ and obey Him, then stay relationally connected to Him throughout the day.

— Ikki Soma, Houston Rockets chaplain

The Increase, part of the Sports Spectrum Network, is a community of Christian pro athletes sharing their personal stories of the decrease of self and the increase of Christ (John 3:30). Visit TheIncrease.com for more stories and videos.