Strong spirits: all you need!

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How is it that a branch of an apple tree is able year after year to bear fruit? It is only possible because it remains attached to the trunk of the tree, from which it gets its nourishment and water. And the branch can't be attached only during the growing season. It needs to remain attached all the time. So we, with God, if we hope to bear fruit in our lives, need to remain not just with, but IN him...

"Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me."Jesus to his friends (John 15:4)
"Apart from me, you can do nothing." (John 15:5)

"This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples." (John 15:8)

"I have told you this so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete." (John 15:11)

You can no more afford to be separate from God some of the time, than you can afford to not breathe some of the time. The results will be the same.

God created us for relationship with himself. We need him like we need breath, like we need blood. He offers himself freely to all. All we need do is receive him. He'll hold us in that relationship, if we'll let him, and fill us with his love and joy. And the result of that relationship will be fruit- we'll become like him, and we will be able to help others. Great fruit, huh?
Remain in him, and yours will be a productive, wonder-full life.

Gary Schwerin serves as pastor at Caledonia Congregational Church. He is also the Spiritual Development Minister for the YMCA of the Rock River Valley and Executive Director of Bridge Ministries of Rockford. Prior to launching Bridge Ministries, Gary spent many years in leadership with Young Life. His columns appear here every Sunday - subscribe to our daily email so you don't miss any.


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