I am the vine; you are the branches. If you abide in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit... This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. John 15:5,8
Ah! the harvest! The reason the Vineyard exists!
I've come full-circle since that first trip to southern California back in March.
Since our daughter and family moved there early this year, I've been able to observe grape vineyards in all major stages of growth -- from pruning to blooming with green fruit and leaves and now to the harvest of ripe fruit followed by early stages of the "dying" process.
All of this to begin again the Cycle of Life!
I love the metaphor of the Vine & the Branches in John 15! It encourages me in my FAITH in the Father, the Vinedresser, Who is doing His work...and in the Vine, His glorious Son and Source of Life. It gives me HOPE for a harvest of Christ-likeness (Gal 5:22-23) and good works (Eph 2:10) as I allow the Living Christ to live through my human life as a Branch in the Vine. And it inspires LOVE for the Lord of the Vineyard who tenderly cares for me, His branch and fruit-bearer.
This metaphor also reminds me that I'm part of something bigger than myself!
I'm one of many beloved branches, brothers and sisters in Christ, who live with the same Life and produce fruit -- the manifest Life of Christ, the Vine. We are fruitful because of His Life flowing through our very beings.
In my next post, I'll share some reflections from John 15 on this final stage of growth -- the harvest. But in the meantime, why not review the process by meditating on John 15:1-17 for yourself.
Here are some questions to get you started: LIST the "persons" being talked about. They are named in verses 1, 2, 8, 12, 13, & 15. (I've found seven...how about you?) Find the ACTION words...What does each "person" DO...and with what RESULTS? WHAT does it mean "to ABIDE"? (Use a dictionary or think of what it might mean it the context) In WHOM/WHAT are we to ABIDE? WHO/WHAT is to ABIDE in us? What has the Holy Spirit "highlighted" to your heart? Make note of those verses and thoughts.
Then if you care to, take a look again at my meditations as
I've "walked through" the stages of vineyard growth this year. May you be blessed, as I have been, to reflect on the Father's work in and through His Son, the True Vine...and also His work in and through us, His branches in His Vine!
I'm looking forward to reading your thoughts and meditations on this rich passage:) So please leave a comment, if you'd like!