fruitful or burnt branches?
"I am the Vine, you are the branches. He who lives in Me and I in him, will produce abundantly, for apart from Me you can do nothing. A man who does not live in Me is like a withered, rejected branch, picked up to be thrown in the fire and burnt." —John 15:5-6
Jesus is the Vine, and that makes us Christians the branches. The Lord insists that we be branches which bear fruit, not just ones with only leaves (see Mk 11:13). We become either an abundantly fruitful branch or a cut-off, burnt branch. We either bear fruit or are destroyed (see Lk 13:7).
We will bear fruit if we live in Jesus and He in us (Jn 15:5). We will bear fruit abundantly and live in Jesus if we:
- let the Lord cut out of our lives anything displeasing to Him (Jn 15:2),
- sow tears of sorrow for our sins (Ps 126:5; see also 2 Cor 7:11),
- sow bountifully in almsgiving (2 Cor 9:6), and
- die to ourselves (Jn 12:24).
In this Great Jubilee, let us pray for a new Pentecost in which the Holy Spirit will produce abundant fruit in our lives (Gal 5:22).
Prayer: Father, keep me out of the fire.
Promise: "This is how we know that He remains in us: from the Spirit that He gave us." —1 Jn 3:24
Praise: Praise Jesus, true Vine (Jn 15:1), Redeemer, risen Son of God!
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, October 4, 1999
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 12, 1999