By Dr Agnes Tan
Like the human body, plants have the ability to heal themselves. If a tree limb breaks in a storm, or for any other reason, it will stay alive as long as it remains attached to the tree. However, the moment it is disconnected from the tree, it will die.
Jesus uses the image of a vine and its branches to describe life in Him. In his seventh “I am” statement, Jesus declares, “I am the true vine.” Like branches that depend on a vine, Jesus teaches that the only kind of life worth living is abiding in union with Him. Thanks be to God that in the moment we accepted Christ as our Saviour, we already abide in Him. Unfortunately, the desire to consistently remain in Christ is easier said than done. Fortunately, we have the body of Christ where we encourage one another by studying His Word together, worshipping together, praying together and serving together. If you are not in a group like this, let me encourage you to join one.
Being connected to Jesus is not merely an end in itself. Jesus said, “Abide in me and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in Me” (v. 4). The longer we abide in Christ, the more we become like Him. But be forewarned, the process of becoming like Him is long, and sometimes painful, but God is committed in helping us. As you go through the painful process of growing, be encouraged. God is pruning us because we’re already bearing fruit. As we become fruitful, God is glorified and we prove that we are His disciples (John 15:8).
Stay connected to Jesus. Abide in Him. Obey Him. Follow Him. Amen.