Renewed, with Purpose!

Remain in me, and I will 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. (John 15:4)

Jesus’ illustration of the vine and the branches is a clear and active example of the Christ follower’s life with God. In these verses, Jesus clearly shows that God expects His followers to bear fruit, and He cuts off those who don’t. He enables us not only to produce fruit, but much fruit. Jesus emphasizes that He is our source (vine), and apart from Him we (branches) can produce nothing.

Preachers often alert their audience when they are getting ready to make an important point by saying “Now listen.” Jesus didn’t use that in presenting this important information to His disciples but, Christ followers—listen! Jesus is laying out a very precise purpose and means for our lives. He tells us that as we remain (abide) in Him, we will produce the fruit that honors His Father. The purpose of the fruit is to glorify God.
 
Parents know when their children behave well, they make them look good. But when children misbehave it makes their parents look bad. For the Christ follower, “making God look good” means letting His light shine through us so that others will see and want it for themselves (Matthew 5:16). Our goal is to bring people to Christ and glory to God.

In a world that distract us from the plan and purpose that God has for our lives. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (Romans 12:2). We need to renew our minds with unhurried, personal time with God every day. Scripture reading, meditating on what we’ve read, confessing our sins humbly and honestly, praying with thanksgiving and worship, listening for that still, small voice that God speaks to our heart, journaling what we have experienced in that time with God—all are ways we can renew our minds. We need to filter out the garbage daily and replace it with the fruits of the spirit—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. How else are we to fulfill the mission that God has for each of us?

Consider the time you spend with God everyday. Each of us is uniquely individual in God’s eyes and so is our time with Him. Ask God to help you fine-tune your time with Him to glean all you can from it. Then go out and make a difference in your world for Christ. Be renewed, with purpose!

(Kathie Welch)
Scripture references from NIV unless otherwise noted.

Based on Come Apart or Come Apart Part 2 on June 1st, 2019 - Watch Sermon