PRAISE & PRAYER PROMPT ••• I started a new book this morning called “They Found the Secret,” by V. Raymond Edman.
It was published in 1960 and it offers 20 short biographies of men and women who discovered what Christ meant when He said, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly” (John 10:10b).
In the first biography of J. Hudson Taylor, there’s an excerpt of something written by Harriet Beecher Stowe (famous for her story, “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”).
It floored me.
I will never look at the “I Am the Vine” statement the same way.
“The very figure which Christ uses illustrates this idea; ‘as the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine, no more can ye, except ye abide in me.’ Now how does a branch bear fruit? Not by incessant effort for sunshine and air; not by vain struggles for those vivifying influences which give beauty to the blossom, and verdure to the leaf;—it simply abides in the vine, in silent and undisturbed union; and the fruit and blossoms appear as of spontaneous growth. How, then, shall a Christian bear fruit? … there must be a full concentration of the thoughts and affections on Christ; a complete surrender of the whole being to him; a constant looking to him for grace. Christians in whom these dispositions are once firmly fixed, go on calmly as the sleeping infant borne in the arms of its mother.”
Powerful illustration, isn’t it?
I am so guilty of trying to measure up on my own power.
We act like it’s up to us, when the truth is we never will.
We can’t earn anything and we can push, pull, kick, and scream to be better, but it’s all futile.
But if we adopt the mindset of the branch, and lean on the strength of the Vine, He will make us flourish.
I’ve never thought about it that way before and I had to share it with you.
Today, as you pray, thank the Father for wisdom of others, who can help us see the truth that He’s put before us.
Ask the Holy Spirit to help you rest against the Vine, without struggle, knowing that through Jesus, you will have everything you need.