The Source Produces Life

As Christians, we need to remember that if other people don’t love God, it is only because they don’t know God, and it’s our job to be God’s witnesses.

In the world around us, we meet many people each day who are either walking in deception and unbelief, or they are in bondage to the powers of darkness. They are part of the reason we as Christians are on the earth today. You and I must reach out to others.

As Christians, we are supposed to love one another and walk in the fruit of the Spirit which is “love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness [and] self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23).

In Matthew 7:1 the Word says, “Judge not, that you be not judged.” In John 15:13, the Word tells us what to do instead: “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.” We are to lay down our lives through prayer and intercession for others, through meeting others’ needs, through spending time reaching out to them and loving them.

Ephesians 3:17 says that we need to be rooted and grounded in love. In John 15:4, Jesus said that the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine. Neither can we bear fruit unless we abide in Him. Then Matthew 7:20 says, “By their fruits you will know them.”

The picture I’m trying to create here is this—God is the source, Jesus is the vine, we are the branches, and by our fruits we will be recognized.

Can you remember the science experiment that many of us did in school, where we stuck a piece of celery or a carnation in some colored dye? If we put a white carnation in a glass of red dye, the flower would eventually draw that red dye up into the flower, and the flower itself would turn red. Whatever the plant is rooted and grounded in will show up in the fruit of the plant.

The branch’s only responsibility is to stay in union with the vine. The branch does not have any control over the fruit, other than to provide a channel for the life juices to flow from the main plant. In the same way, Christians have no other responsibility than to stay in union with God through Jesus and provide a conduit for His love and Word to flow. God will take care of the rest. Isaiah 55:11 says God’s Word shall not return void, but it shall accomplish that which He pleases, and prosper in the thing for which it is sent.

Bearing fruit is a totally natural process for the plant. The next time you walk by a fruit tree, go stand right beside it. Put your ear up next to the trunk if you want to and listen very carefully. You will never hear a tree groaning and straining to produce fruit. It’s not challenging work. It is a natural process for the tree.

The same goes for us as Christians. If we will make certain that we study the Word every day, spend time in prayer, and stay faithful in church, then our lives will naturally bear fruit. It is not up to us to decide what kind of fruit we should bear. Our only job is to stay connected to Jesus and allow His life and His love to flow out through our life towards others.

Remember, God is the source. Jesus is the vine. And we are the branches. The fruit of the Spirit is “love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness [and] self-control.” If these are not evident in your life, check your source.

Devotion 0200

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