“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, and I will 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. John 15:1-4 (NIV)
Do you want to live a life that is fruitful? Do you want to bear fruit for my kingdom? Do you want to bring glory to my name? Do you want to shine brightly for me in the darkness of this world? Would you like to live a life that I can use? Do you want to others to be drawn to me through the witness and testimony of your life? Would you one day like to hear me say, “Well done, good and faithful servant?” Yes, I want all of this. How can I live this kind of life? What will be required of me for this to be true of me? You must do one thing if you want to live this kind of life. You must do one thing if you want these things to be true of you. You have my full attention. I am listening very carefully to you. What one thing must I do? You must live in an intimate relationship with me. You must make living in an intimate relationship with me the priority of your life. Does that sound simple? Does that easy? Before you answer, I will answer for you. No, it will not be simple. No, it will not be easy. Living in an intimate relationship with me will require everything from you. Does my answer surprise you? No, not really. Why is that? I know that the world, my flesh, and the devil will make every effort to prevent me from living in an intimate relationship with you. I know that the hurry and noise and busyness of life will make every attempt to distract me from living in an intimate relationship with you. I know that the thoughts and opinions and values of the world will try to conform to its pattern and mood me into its shape. But I will have none of this. I have had enough of this fruitless and barren life. I will have no more of living at a distance from you. Now, there is no place I would rather be than in your presence. Now, there is nothing I would rather do than bear fruit for your kingdom and bring glory to your name. Living in an intimate relationship with you may not be easy or simple but neither is it hard. Why is that? I love you with all my heart and mind and soul and strength. I want to live a life of pleasing you. Nothing will bring me greater joy or pleasure than living in an intimate relationship with you. Giving myself to you completely is the desire of my heart. Here I am, I am all yours. I will live in an intimate relationship with you. That is very good. Yes, it is.
Lord, I know I have gotten caught up in the hurry, noise, and busyness of life. This is not a life of abiding. This is no way to remain in you. This is the opposite of living in an intimate relationship with you. Help me to live an abundant, fruitful life of abiding in you. Amen
Key Question… What commitment will be required of you if you want to live in an intimate relationship with the Lord?
Living It Out… Make it your daily priority to meet in prayer with the Lord so you can remain in Him and bear fruit for His kingdom.
Seeing It Happen… Have faith that you will bear an abundance of fruit for the kingdom of God as you abide in Him.
Get Ready To Share… Share with another person or your small group what spiritual disciplines have most helped you to abide in Christ.
Prayer To Bless Others… May you remain in Christ so you can bear an abundance of fruit for Him.
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