What a journey in the Word lately. First there was John 14 reminding me that if I love Jesus I will obey Him (verse 15). Then, yesterday there was John 15 and the vine/branch metaphor with the pruning aspect and the casting away of fruitless branches. Today, I got this in Psalm 15 (ESV):
O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent?
Who shall dwell on your holy hill?
He who walks blamelessly and does what is right
and speaks truth in his heart;
who does not slander with his tongue
and does no evil to his neighbor,
nor takes up a reproach against his friend;
in whose eyes a vile person is despised,
but who honors those who fear the Lord;
who swears to his own hurt and does not change;
who does not put out his money at interest
and does not take a bribe against the innocent.
He who does these things shall never be moved.
Wow. What a description of those who are in Christ. At least, what we are supposed to be. I must admit, I felt a little overwhelmed at first. I kept asking God how? How am I supposed be that person? I want to be one of those who live in Your tent and dwell in Your presence. I want to be one who is not moved (or shaken as the NIV puts it). But how?
Then I went back to John 15. He reminded me that I must be connected to the true vine, Jesus Himself. “As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:4, 5 ESV) I’ve got to stop concentrating so much on actions and concentrate more on “abiding.” Being one with Christ. Soaking in His Word. Letting Him prune as He sees fit. That’s where the real power is. Abiding in Christ.
Branches that aren’t connected are fruitless and wither. Branches that are connected to the true vine are pruned by the vinedresser (the Father) and bear much fruit for His glory. I want to be one of those.