“I am the vine and you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in Him, bears much fruit; for without me you can do nothing.” John 15:5
Branches grow out of the vine, or bush, or tree, and there it lives and grows. It receives all it requires for growth receiving full nourishment to mature and bear its fruit in due season. The source of the branch’s sustenance comes from the root, the sap in its stem, and the water whose source deeply feeds the plant with richly laden nutrients.
So, it is with our Christian life. We are instructed to abide in the vine, who is Christ.
It is Christ who has filled us in His Holy Spirit who is our nourishing life source, the sap, that runs through our bodies, enriching us in His fullness, who nurtures our spiritual growth, giving us all we need to become the Christians scriptures write about, where our life will bring forth the fruits of His Spirit.
As the branch, my life has been grafted into the source of all I could possibly need or desire, the richly nourished vine who is the Spirit of Christ, in whose sustenance, I must become absolutely dependent upon in every moment I have breath.
It is the vine who must do a great work in providing sustenance to the branch in order to for it to bring forth its fruit.
The roots of this vine, dig deeply into the soil, hunting underneath the ground, often extending a long way out to find its source of nourishment, to drink of any available moisture, (minerals, manure, fertilizer). As the roots drink from available sources of water, this life source flows through their stems turning this moisture and whatever manure it takes in, into nutrients that enrich the sap in whose nourishment cause fruits to spring forth, flourishing from the branches.
Using grapes as an example of fruits, its vine (roots, stems) is the part of the plant life that does all the work and the branches simply receive of its rich nutrients where numerous grapes appear in the right season of maturity where an abundant harvest is gleaned. Any additional nutrients near the source of water, will only add to the bounty of fruits that will be harvested.
The same is with my life in Christ. I must understand that in all my work, in all my ministering, in all my Christian service, the very foundation of my accomplishments lies in the fact, it is the Spirit of Christ who is continually at work in and through me that cares for all.
It is the Spirit who births Christ’s compassionate caring love, pours out His mercy and gives His abundant Grace inside of me, in which His life flows from me touching the hearts of men, women and children as I learn to depend on His ability to do so.
Therefore, when I apply this in my life, I find myself walking in the Spirit’s ability, abiding in the vine of Christ who is my source, giving of all that is me, to His love, to do the transformation work necessary to walk in attaining to a deeper level of Christian maturity.
The living connection of my life source must be one where every hour, every day, every month, every year, my reliance must be so dependent in the Christ Spirit to do the work He has purposed and intended to be fulfilled in and through my life, as I learn the moment by moment process of letting go of all that is self.
It is I who must come to the realization; I know nothing, I am nothing, and I can do nothing without maintaining an intimacy in fellowshipping with Him.
I do this by abiding in Him, nurturing this desired fellowship, having daily communion in Him and with Him. I do this by remaining open, willing, in becoming sensitive in turning my attention to listen to Him, to hear His voice, and to align my heart’s preferences in seeking His holy will and intended purposes in what He desires to accomplish in and through me.
I learn to abide in Him along with learning to have a total dependence upon His ability to be the love, to be the compassion, to be the strength, and to grow in my ability to discern His wisdom; to guide, lead and empower me to do the work involved in my Christian service that He has called me to, when I choose His way as a lifestyle, day by day.
Reverend Andrew Murray in his book ‘Absolute Surrender’ says it very well. “If I am something, then God is not everything; but when I become nothing, God can become all, and the everlasting God in Christ can reveal Himself fully.”
I am not sure about you, but to meditate on this sentence is to bring into my heart an understanding of what this means in my present state, in learning how to become nothing, and in learning this, to also realize how great my need is to apply, carrying this learned dependence to do all I do, in and by His Holy Spirit ability.
How grateful I am that Christ does not expect instant maturity, nor can this type of maturity develop quickly, but it is a result of years of marinating in Him, bathing in His word, and practicing the daily disciplines of our faith, growing in our ability to walk in a spiritual discernment in knowing the way in which to walk, then I must be attentive, adhering to the Spirit’s voice in continuing to walk therefore in it.
In knowing I am helpless in my own self, of my own ability, in my own methods, in my own designs, and in truly recognizing I must come to a place of having an Absolute Dependence upon God, is knowing this is the secret place of all power in the Christian work, the necessary letting go in leaving myself behind.
The sap of the vine is exactly what the Holy Spirit is in me, coursing through my cells, vibrantly running through my blood, richly enhancing all of whom I am becoming in and by His ability; His power, His wisdom, His grace, His mercies, and His everlasting love.
I must take care to have as preeminent above anything else in this world to so nurture, guarding and protecting with gentle, tender attentive care, my relationship with Jesus, His Holy Spirit and my Father, who are one as the Godhead of all love and in whose union is my source of the abundant life promised and fulfilled as I deeply align all of whom I am in these most holy of beings.
I must bring everything I am, everything I think, everything I believe and everything I hope to be, into my relationship with Him, leaving nothing out, no sin that easily besets me, as it all must come to the Cross and die a death.
Those fleshly tendencies that tug at me, those places in myself, must be brought before the shining light of the Holy Spirit in a daily surrender, in a daily bowing before my Father, in a daily admission of my need for Him to be all in and through me; seeking that He remove anything not Godly, anything hindering Him, anything deterring me from fulfilling my God-ordained destiny.
I must earnestly come to the place where I willingly seek, asking the Christ Spirit to continually exchange my stone heart, for God’s Heart, allowing His Spirit to perform His miraculous work in and though me as a submissive, willing, obedient, women, so His desires will spring forth from the inner well of His waters in me, overflowing from my being as my life’s source is known in His resurrected life who sustains me in all my moments, releasing His power upon the earth.
As a result of this near union, it is the Spirit who will show me what is not of Him and it will be He that will so consecrate, binding my heart in a holy allegiance to Him in being in this close and most intimate of fellowships found in the Godhead.
I as the branch in whose heart is earnestly desiring to maintain this deeply known spiritual connection with my Christ, the vine in whom my communion is dear, fully realize my need for His Spirit, who grants me full access to all the resources in Heaven, is the one who releases His power from His divine life, giving me ability to walk as His authentic daughter who speaks His truth.
It is I who must know it is His Spirit who fully equips me to carry forward all that He wishes to bring to fruition in and through my absolute surrender, to accomplish those works He has destined me to, in and by His abundant ability.
Christ who is the vine, in whom I am securely bound, is the one whom I desire to surrender myself entirely to, so His Spirit will bring forth those freshest and sweetest of fruits, and in whose life blood is my source continually filling me with His Holy Spirit, overflowing richly, the fullness of His glorious blessings from His goodness and love He pours into me, so all the world will know that He lives and that in knowing Him, they will know His love is pure, true, and real.
This work has all been done and accomplished through Christ and it is I who must learn to receive all that He has placed within me, from the depths of my heart, that He may have my entire heart and all that lies in the deepest regions of my being, where I hold no thing back from Him.
This is the place of discovering in my soul, how fully satisfied I am, in knowing God is enough.
Lorraine Taylor – Lay Minister
Here are some prayers for us to reflect on and consider.
Lord, search my heart and see if there is anything ungodly at work in me. I ask you Holy Spirit to continue removing, purging, molding and forming me into the image of Christ, inside and out.
Lord, I seek Your will above all my dearest Savior, friend, and brother.
Lord, I ask that you touch me anew, refresh the filling of Your Spirit of life and burn Your holy fire to burst forth the transforming regenerate life You have birthed in me to come alive as never before known.
Lord, I have but one prayer, that You draw me deeper, wider, broader into You and let me Know you more intimately than I have ever dreamed, imagined, or desired.
As always, I am willing to hear any responses, thoughts or reflections you have had after reading this post!