Last blog post I mentioned refinement, and what can happen when we haven’t gone through the refining process. Today’s blog goes hand in hand with refinement. When we do not allow God to refine us it is extremely hard to bear good fruit.
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.
“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. This is my command: Love each other.” – John 15:1-17
There is so much wisdom in this scripture alone. Honestly it is pretty self explanatory. I want to point out that over an over again in scripture the Lord continuously mentions knowing people by their fruits. In the passage above it says that if someone does not remain in the vine who is Jesus you are like a branch that withers and is thrown into the fire.
Christians need to be aware that even though they have given their heart Jesus it is clear that if we do not remain in Him we will lose all that we have received from Him. There are many Christians who are extremely gifted, yet do not carry much fruit with them. I know I used to be one, and although there are times I will make a mistake and fall. I know that my heart is to learn from my mistake I pick myself up and continue to press into the Lord. That is what it means to be pruned, when we make a mistake we quickly repent and learn from where we went wrong.
I encourage you today to look at your tree. Is it bearing the fruit you desire it to? Are you continually pressing into the vine who is Jesus? The fruit in our lives will often bear where we are with Him and what we are going through. There is something necessary about being clipped and pruned by God. No, it is not fun, or comfortable. Allowing the pruning process to occur will help us become much healthier trees bearing good fruit.