Today’s reading is John 15-16.

“I can’t.” We don’t like to say that. We scratch and claw and white knuckle our way through, trying to prove that we can. But listen to Jesus. “As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.” God has commanded you to bear fruit and you can keep trying. But if you don’t live in the vine, you never will no matter how good you think what you are doing is. Only by Jesus can you bear God-glorifying fruit. No wonder we must put God in the beginning.

Tomorrow’s reading is John 17-18.

A Word for Our Kids

Hey kids, did you understand Jesus’s vine, branch, and fruit metaphor? If we don’t bear fruit, that is produce characteristics, attitudes, and behaviors that glorify God, we will be judged, cut off and thrown into the fire. However, the part we often misunderstand is that when we do bear fruit, we are pruned so we can bear more. That means the vine dresser takes shears, a kind of scissors, and cuts bits off. That sounds painful. However, it is through that disciplinary pruning that we are able to bear even more fruit. When you are abiding in Christ, there will be times that feel like pruning, having little bits cut off, but our vine dresser, Jesus, knows where to cut and knows it is for our good. Trust Him always.

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