I moved into my house several years ago in the dreariness of November. As my first spring approached, I was excited to see what kind of foliage the previous owner had planted. And what bloomed would soon become my arch nemesis – vines. My fence in the backyard was covered in them. They popped up under the cover of night just to mock me.
I enjoy talking to my neighbor kids over the fence, and the vines create this impenetrable barrier between my yard and theirs. Short of lighting them on fire, I have tried just about everything to get rid of them. I even tried to dig them up by the roots, but I apparently did not get all the root because they stayed away for about a week and then rose to mock again.
I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. John 15:5
This month’s picture of Jesus is Jesus as the Vine. While the vines in my yard cause me real frustration, dwelling on the fact that Jesus refers to Himself as the Vine brings great comfort. His roots go deeper than anyone can dig up. If we abide in Him, He gives us everything we need to thrive, and like my vines, that thriving often looks exponentially greater than any efforts we could put in – we can have explosive growth seemingly out of nowhere.
The source of life comes from the Vine. Without Him, we can do nothing. So, we need to abide in Him. Abide: dwell, reside, remain. How often do we stop by to visit Him but forget to stay and rest in Him? How often do we try to disconnect from the Vine and hope we can still make it on our own? How often do we get impatient to see fruit and are tempted to not abide but manipulate an outcome?
Abide in Me … for without Me you can do nothing.