“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” (John 15:5).
This Scripture passage is quoted often. I wondered if any new insights could come from it for me? Many in our chronic pain community wonder if we are bearing any fruit as we trust the Lord while entrenched in our circumstances.
I found myself going deeper with this verse when this question was posed: “What are the fruits of your relationship with God in your life?”
In my weaknesses, I know I am dependent on God’s strengths. It blesses me to be so grafted and I pray that it blesses him. Yet I find fault when I don’t see fruit–what I perceive as fruit. I recognize my need to be pruned of my fault-finding and look at what is flowing forth.
I am the branch–not the Vine. I abide; He feeds. I trust and what blooms is my relationship with Him.
Is not this the best fruit–my relationship with Him? If my clinging to Him is all that can comprise a day, a week, a month, then is not this more lovely than worldly ambitions? Might He see the loveliness in my trust as I surrender the blooms I want to see?
In such surrender, I am saying to Him, “Your will be done”, and discarding the weights I often bear when I want my own ways. Those distractions can bring forth self-pity–not exactly a pretty bloom, but weeds choking out what God may be wanting to come forth.
My relationship with the Lord is the fullest of blooms I am bearing as I cling to Him. May this remain my focus!
Prayer: Lord, I need the reminder of Your unconditional love, the fruit that first grafted me into You. That fruit will keep my focus in the “now” with Your deciding what more You want to bring forth. Amen.
About the Author:
Lynn Severance is a retired elementary classroom teacher. Since 1983, she has lived with vestibular dysfunction: constant dizziness, sessions of vertigo and related side effects of nausea, balance problems, neck and back pain, visual tracking and eye fatigue. She is a breast cancer survivor having gone through surgery and chemotherapy treatments in 1987-88. She lives in Lynnwood, Washington. Do visit her blog at http://lynn-severance.blogspot.com
What has been your focus in thinking of God as the Vine and you as one of the branches grafted into Him? How has your journey with chronic pain/illness shaped how you focus now?
This is a beautiful arrangement of the hymn, “Be Still My Soul.” Lynn shares, “Kari Jobe interprets the classic hymn as a reminder of my message. Only in our abiding relationship with the Lord, will we be able to bear all that He asks and all the He wants to give. Be blessed.” Hope you feel His grace! -Lisa