getting out the Word

the 5th sunday of easter

the PRAYER …

O God, you give us your Son as the vine apart from whom we cannot live. Nourish our life in his resurrection, that we may bear the fruit of love and know the fullness of your joy, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

the READING …

[Jesus said:] “Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me.” ( john 15:1-8 )

the DEVOTION …

Growing up in the burbs, my knowledge of agriculture was limited to a few tomato plants outside the back door. And to the pansies and marigolds we planted, every Spring. I knew the basics. Bread came from wheat. Apples from trees. And now and then, my friends and I’d abscond with a cluster or two of grapes from a neighbor’s backyard. But I have to admit, most of what I knew about growing grapes came from John 15. Vines! Branches! Fruit! (After that, I, kinda, got lost in all the abide-ins.)

Anyway, this time through, I noticed something. About the branches and the vine. Without the vine, the branches produce nothing. I got that much. But the same thing can be said about the vine! Without the branches, the vine bears nothing! Truth is, the vine needs the branches as much as the branches need the vine! It may sound cocky. Overconfident. Even irreverent. But Jesus could have added one more verse … “Just as the vine cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the branches … neither can I unless I abide in you!” Word of God, Word of Life!

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