Our memory verse this week, John 15:5, is part of a longer section of Scripture that begins in John 15:1 and ends at John 15:11. Jesus tells His disciples that His Father is the Gardner, He is the Vine, and His followers are the branches.
I’ve had a vegetable garden for many years now. I have to admit that I’m a horrible gardener. I don’t spend the time taking care of my plants like I should. As a result, my garden tends to end up weak and full of weeds. The plants don’t get enough water, bugs and disease aren’t dealt with like they should be, and precious little pruning ever takes place. My plants need me to tend and care for them or they will never be what they can become…what God designed them to become.
I’m so grateful that our Gardener isn’t like me. He cares for us, waters us with His Word and His Spirit, puts us through the painful, but necessary pruning process, and takes great delight in His garden.
Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the braches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” Our place in the garden is to be connected to the Vine. We draw our nourishment, our life, from the Vine. Our dependence is upon the Vine. Our production of fruit isn’t dependent on our abilities, but on our reliance and connection to the Vine. That is why Jesus said, “If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit…” I hope that this week, as we hide God’s Word in our hearts, the Lord will use this verse to impress upon our minds and our hearts how important it is for us to cling to, abide in, and rely upon the Vine rather than our own abilities or others. There’s no other solution, no other option, no other plan, and no other answer…apart from Jesus we can do nothing!