“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinegrower. ... 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. I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing. ... If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.
-John 15:1,5-5,10 NRSV
A few verses back we read that Jesus said: "I am the way, and the truth, and the life." In calling himself the true vine he seems to double down on that idea with another "I am" statement. These words speak to me of what it means for Jesus to be the way. And about how important it is for me to abide in the love of God. And to love the people in my life.
I love this metaphor. I love the idea of being spiritually connected to God like branches of a tree. It speaks to me about the source of "the life" coming from our spiritual roots and not from just doing good things. When we love as Jesus loves we show ourselves as people connected to the life and love of God. It inspires me to be like the One who is called Love.
Remind us today Lord that you are the source of life and of love. Help us to bear much fruit today and tomorrow.
... this devotion is part of an ongoing series on the Gospel of John.