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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Abide in Jesus

PART 2 - HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW?
The second way to grow our spiritual gardens is to "ABIDE IN JESUS". The Bible has many examples of gardens and flowers and also talks about the problems of weeds and stones. Jesus used gardening-type talk several times in parables when he spoke. Let’s look at one of those examples when Jesus is speaking to the disciples.

John 15:1-5. "I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 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. "I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing."

These verses tell us that we are the branches and that we should bear fruit, but we also must realize that it is only because of God being the gardener and Jesus being the vine that we can bear fruit. We can do things and be successful in the world’s eyes, but we will only truly grow if we are connected to Jesus and grow the way God wants us to.

It would be so easy if flowers, fruits and vegetables just grew, never needed tending to, and took care of themselves, but they don't. It is the same in our lives. Good fruit will not just grow in our lives, either. Throughout the Bible, fruit is referred to as what is within us. Christians should have good fruit within us because we are children of God.

Jesus is our example. He came to this earth to show us and tell us the way to live. He came to show us and tell us what type of fruit to bear. We, as His disciples, are to walk in the same manner as He walked, which means to live as He lived.

I John 2:6 Whoever claims to live in Him must walk as Jesus did.

How, then, did Jesus live? Jesus did not live to please Himself.

John 8:29 The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him”.

Instead, He lived to glorify God. Jesus’ purpose was to do God’s Will on earth as it is being done in heaven and to accomplish that which He was prophesied to accomplish by the prophets long, long ago. So to abide in Jesus means to live our lives denying ourselves, serving others, bearing fruit, and striving always to do God’s Will. We have to be careful, though. We can get so caught up in doing for Him, that we forget to just BE with Him. We have to be careful not to be too busy to "Abide in Jesus".

How do you strive to "Abide in Jesus"?

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