Friday, April 9, 2010

taken straight from the pages of my Bible...

Jesus, the True Vine

John 15:1~17

1  "I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener

2  He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn't produce fruit, and He prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more.

3  You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you.

Remain in me, and I will remain in you.  For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.

5  "Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches.  Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit.  For apart from me, you can do nothing

6  Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers.  Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned.

But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted!

When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples.  This brings great glory to my Father.

9  "I have loved you even as the Father has loved me.  Remain in my love

10  When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father's commandments and remain in his love.

11  I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy.  Yes, your joy will overflow!

12  This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.

13  There is no greater love than to lay down one's life for one's friends.

14  You are my friends if you do what I command. 

15  I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn't confide in his slaves.  Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.

16  You didn't choose me.  I chose you.  I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for using my name. 

17  This is my command: Love each other.

Ah, the glories of Spring.  I was looking out our window one morning, and I noticed that our crepe myrtles need to be cut back.  Pruned.  The old branches from last year are still on the trees.  As long as those old, dead branches remain on those trees, no new life will grow. 

It's trying~but to no avail.

I love how God's word says that He's pruned us through His message~verse 3.  Those of us who know Him and have Him in our hearts are continually being pruned.

We have new life in Him. 

He did that for us when we asked Him into our hearts. 

We shouldn't want to keep doing the same old stuff.  Those branches are dead {like on my crepe myrtles} and are useless. 

But when we cut back those branches...even in just a matter of days, new life springs forth. 

Don't you love that mental picture? 

We begin to want to change.  Slowly and surely, God begins this refining process.  Are we ever done?  I hope not, because boy, did I get aggravated with my kids on Monday morning.  And Tuesday and last night.

But that's the thing about my God~He is constantly there to catch me when I fall or when I begin to slip. 

Reach out to Him...He's there with His pruning scissors in hand. 

And in the end, what a glorious sight. 

Love to all today.  May He richly bless you in all you do.

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