Today’s reading: John 15:1-8
One of the easiest traps for a Christian to fall in is the trap of “doing.” Remember the story of the rich ruler from a few days ago? He was a doer – he followed all the rules, was ethical at work, tithed how much he was supposed to, went to church every week, read his Bible ... and yet when Jesus said “come follow me” he refused. The ruler’s life was so built on doing things FOR God, he rejected the opportunity to BE WITH God.
In our lives, it’s possible to LOOK like a good Christian: to generally be nice, go through a 30-day devotional, maybe even serve at church ... and to not really know God for ourselves. In today’s passage Jesus says we’re like branches on a tree. A branch serves only one purpose – to bear fruit. If it doesn’t bear fruit it has no purpose. So imagine if a branch said to a tree “okay, I’m going to try REALLY hard to bear fruit for you” ... that would be missing the point! A branch can’t bear fruit on its own, it just naturally bears fruit when it’s connected to the tree – it happens because the branch is attached to its source of nutrition.
In the same way we can only bear fruit by being “attached” to Jesus. Reading the Bible only matters if in doing it our attention is drawn to the God who inspired it. Serving at church is only beneficial if we’re doing it with the love of God flowing through us.
Our job as Christians is the be connected to the vine of Jesus – and when we do that, HE produces fruit in US.
Now what: What would it look like to stay “connected” to Jesus throughout your day – at work, home, church, school, while running errands, changing diapers or eating dinner? Talk to God about what that could look like, and invite him in to the next 24 hours of your life.
If you’re up for it, set the alarm on your phone to vibrate every hour or two – use this as a reminder to stop for a few seconds, focus on God being with you, and invite Him into what you’re doing.
This isn’t a formula – formulas are for math and business, not relationships – but it is a helpful way to organize our thoughts around who God really is.
Want More? 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
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