Living the Reality of Abiding
The Vinedresser will attend to the vine in order to cultivate an environment that will bear the most fruit. Pruning is a necessary part of care for the vine to thrive and flourish. When God, the Vinedresser, looks at your life He knows what you need to produce fruit. He knows what to prune and take away. There may be momentary pain that leads to a deeper, richer result. The fruit produced from pruning is sweeter and more abundant.
What is holding you back from allowing the Vinedresser to produce abundant fruit in and through you? (A lukewarm heart, mediocracy, distractions, busyness, idolatry, pride, anger, self-absorption?) Is there something that needs to be more simplified? More focused? Is there something that the Vinedresser requires you to give up? Is there a sin, attitude, behavior, or fear that needs to be removed?
Is the Vinedresser coming back year after year and pruning the same thing? Cooperate with the Vinedresser. Allow Him to cut away the hindrances to catalyze growth and flourishing.
Abiding is dwelling, resting, and having a constant awareness of Christ. One only bears much fruit if abiding. We can do nothing – no thing – without Christ. Believe this. Walk in this truth. Let it permeate to the depths of your bones.
Measure your abiding by the joy in the Lord. “These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.” (John 15:11) You already have joy given by Christ. Savor life, don’t just get through this season and say, “I will have joy when…” Don’t surrender your joy. To evaluate the strength and reality of your abiding, assess your joy. Joy will overflow and remain, even in the most tumultuous circumstances, if you are abiding. Seize and dwell in the joy Christ has already given to you as you abide. May your joy be made full.
1 Webster’s Dictionary, 1828.