Thursday, December 23, 2010

A Fruitful Life

The words of Jesus... "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... 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. I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in Me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from Me you can do nothing." John 15:1-2, 4-5

My Lord is the Master Gardener. He works to trim and prune, shape and water with the end product in mind, a tree that bears much fruit. His goal is to garden in such a way that He makes each branch on the vine more and more fruitful to the glory of God. This is what pleases Him. A fruitful life is one that He has cleansed, one that abides in Him, and one that walks in obedience to His will. Remaining or abiding in Christ means living a life in which I consciously choose not to allow things into (or back into) my life that separate me from My Father. The only way to bear this kind of beautiful fruit that pleases my Lord is to steep myself in Christ through prayer and time studying His Word; through listening for and responding to His voice, and acting in obedience. Then and only then will I bear "much" fruit. Fruit that glorifies the Father. Fruit that models Christian character, conducting myself in a moral and righteous way that reflects Christ. For apart from Christ, His Word says, I can do nothing... nothing that truly matters anyway.

My Lord has been cleansing and pruning this branch called "Pamela" for a number of years now, probably more than I can count or have even been aware of. He has been thoroughly cleansing me of the things that once hindered, pruning to the point that it hurts, and teaching me to walk more closely with Him. The more fully I know who the "Vine" is, the more this "branch" can know His will and produce good fruit for His glory, and not my own.

Lord Jesus, make me fruitful for You, whatever it takes. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

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