John 15:4,5 (KJV)
My husband and I were driving into Charleston a couple of weeks ago when we encountered the traffic backing up on I-26. Suddenly, traffic was at a complete stop and I looked out my window to admire the energy and newness that assured me the long cold winter was finally over!
Spring was positively revealing new greenery along side the highway and I was thinking how magnificent it is to view God's declaration that there is definitely life after death! However, within minutes I realized that right along side this newness, there was lifeless and dead shrubbery, which made me wonder was the Gospel of Jesus Christ being fully realized in any or all of us?
I expressed to my husband what had suddenly struck my heart, the brush was comparable to today's church. In the midst of fresh vines that were expecting growth as they reached out to new heights in and for Christ, there was also dead brush! Dead brush, equivalent to the hearts of man that are self sufficient and content to remain just as they are.
Christ is calling us to live in Him to make our homes in Him just He makes His life in us. A branch cannot bear fruit by itself, it must be living and joined to the vine.
Jesus says, "I am the Vine and we are the branches and if we are joined with Him and He with us our relationship becomes devoted and organic to one another, only then is the harvest sure to be abundant"! Apart from the Lord, we cannot succeed in producing anything of value that would help the lost or hurting in our world.
As we separate ourselves from the Lord we become as dead wood, that will be gathered one day and thrown into a blazing and flaming inferno. Still, when we make ourselves at home in Christ Jesus and His Word becomes at home in us, we are then assured that our communication with Him will be not only heard but answered!
God will show us exactly who He is as we declare ourselves dead to self... mature and alive in Him, then and only then will we will absolutely be His disciples. I think of the Bible verse; I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me!. Galatians 2:20 (KJV)
The question is: Will I abide in Christ so that my life in Him is alive and doing His will instead of my own -- Or will I be content, dead and detached from the Vine who is Christ Jesus; not just in my life, but in the entire body of Christ Jesus...???
We are either dead... or alive when it comes to living for Jesus!