i am a branch
Read Philippians 3:4-14 to see the example of someone who learned to put his confidence in God alone.
Are you living in a way that draws your sufficiency from God— not in some aspects but in all? What will it mean for you to live with nothing coming from you and everything coming from God?
A young boy was planting an apple tree in the backyard. As soon as it was planted, he exclaimed to his grandfather, “Pop-pop, we just planted an apple tree. Now we’re going to put apples on it!”
The boy’s attitude reflects the way we sometimes view fruitfulness in our life. We often behave as if we can bear fruit by ourselves.
Jesus tells us in John 15:5 that leading a life that produces “much fruit” is not about trying to live up to His teaching and example; rather, it’s about a life-changing relationship with Him at the very core of our being. The reason is simple: He is the vine, and we are the branches.
The great, central theme of the New Testament is the astonishing fact of our union with Jesus Christ—God’s Son. Our lives are joined to the life of Jesus, our Savior and Lord. In light of this vine-branch relationship, we live with the recognition that our sufficiency comes fully from God, and that we’re wholly dependent upon the Lord and His work in us. So we live in such a way as to draw our sufficiency from God. Pastor and author Ray Stedman understood that and said he wanted to live with “everything coming from God and nothing coming from me.”
Prayer is an admission of that dependence. When we pray, we’re admitting to God that we’re powerless to do anything and are totally dependent on God to do everything. And when we lean not on our own understanding but allow God’s Word to order our life, we’re admitting: “Jesus, I live by Your Word.”
So, how have you been doing in recognizing that your sufficiency comes from God? Jesus declares to you and me today: “I am the vine; you are the branches.”
NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: Luke 14:1-14
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