When Jesus says, “Abide in me,” I believe he is talking about a deep relationship that lives and breathes in our very core. I have children, and no matter how old we become they are always on my mind. They “abide” in my heart, if you will. Some of the things that abide with us are not all good, like regrets of the past that haunt our rest, or that list we think of every time we confess “things we have left undone.” These relationships and regrets might all be vines that we cling to (or that cling to us), but they are not the true vine that is the love of God in Christ Jesus.
When we abide in Jesus we produce good fruit. I am thinking of the apostle Paul’s fruits of the spirit in Galatians, “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” (Galatians 5:22-23)
It is said that being connected is what humans strive for the most. Be it family, friends, church, charities or organizations, we thrive in our healthy connections. When your deepest connection is Jesus, you grow and thrive, and the fruit you produce blesses and nurtures all those around you.
Compassionate God, make us into branches of good fruit, loving and caring in the world. Amen. — ML