10/28/13

Abide in Christ: Fourth Day

Abide in Christ
by Andrew Murray
As the Branch and the Vine
I am the Vine, ye are the branches. - John 15:5
 
 
"The branch does not exist for itself, but to bear fruit that can proclaim the excellence of the vine; it has  no reason of existence except to be of service to the vine. Glorious image of the calling of the believer, and the entireness of his consecreation to the service of his Lord."
 
"instead of only thinking how hard and how difficult it is to live like a branch to the True Vine, because I thought of it as something I had to accomlish - shall I not now begin to look upon it as the most blessed and joyful thing under heaven?"
 
The imagery of the branch and the vine is stuck in my head.  [See here] The branch is so depedent on the vine.  Apart from the vine, the branch is dead.  It is just a stick (and when I think of sticks, I cannot help but think of play-swords, sorry, I am a mom of boys!).  We are dead without the vine.  Apart from the vine, we cannot bear fruit.  I will have no victory over sin in my life without connection to the vine.  There are certain sins in my life that I have been convicted about lately, and I cannot have any type of victory over them unless I am abiding.  The fruit that is produced by the vine is done on the branch.  It is credited to the vine, but it is the branches that bear the fruit.  I do not want to be a sad little branch, empty of fruit for my Saviour!  I want to be weighed down by the fruit.  My children are sometimes heavy and their constant needs are hard to hold.  So many days start out with a prayer for strength.  Strength to have love. Strength to have joy. Strength to correct and discipline.  Strength for the day-to-day.  Without the abiding in Christ, there is no strength.  This union with Christ is such a wonderful thing! All that Christ is, is found in this abiding. 
Do you  need joy? Do you need love? Do you need help or strength?  This union - abiding - is where you will find it!
 
Lord, let me not look at abiding as my duty - but as this "most blessed and joyful thing under heaven"! I am so humbled that you would chose to graft me into Your Vine.  Let me rest in You, and leave the fruit-bearing to You. Amen.
 

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Side note: if you are interested in The True Vine by Andrew Murray - it is worth every penny!  He goes through John 15 word by word and it is so amazing, this parable of Jesus!