John 15:5 – I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.,
It’s funny how many times I return to lessons learned at the beginning of the outpouring of 1994. One of those was my need to be a receiver. I had been running hard for sixteen years at that point, trying to build our church. That was the problem, I had slipped over into doing and had forgot one of the lessons from the vineyard from our Bible School that I had learned at the beginning of my Christian journey. I was the branch, He was the vine. Life comes from the vine and flows into the branch. The only thing that I have to give; let me say that again, the only thing that I have to give… is the life that flows from the vine into me. I was a branch. That really takes the pressure off of me, my only job was to stay connected and keep receiving from the vine. Here is how Andrew Murray describes this.
“There is the lesson of absolute dependence. The vine has its stores of life and sap and strength, not for itself, but for the branches. The branches are and have nothing but what the vine provides and imparts. The believer is called to, and it is his highest blessedness to enter upon, a life of entire and unceasing dependence upon Christ. Day and night, every moment, Christ is to work in him all he needs.
And then the lesson of undoubting confidence. The branch has no cure; the vine provides all; it has but to yield itself and receive. It is the sight of this truth that leads to the blessed rest of faith, the true secret of growth and strength: “I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.”
The really encouraging part in all of this, there is life, abundant life continually flowing out from the vine. Going back to the beginning of the outpouring I remember the blessing of just laying on the floor. At first I felt foolish, next I felt guilty (I should be doing something), and finally I just began to get it. I could only bear fruit if I was connected. It was so simple, just be a branch. Just abide in Him. So after all these years I find myself back at the beginning; In myself I can do nothing. With Him, all things are possible.