Monday, September 12, 2016

Vine Life

Today's reflection on the Daily Texts:

I, the Lord, am the vineyard’s keeper; every moment I water it. I guard it night and day so that no one can harm it. – Isaiah 27:3

My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit and become my disciples. – John 15:8

Two-year reading texts: Psalm 106:32-39; 1 Samuel 1:1-2:11; Luke 23:44-56

The grapevine is a powerful metaphor for life with God. Jesus says "I am the vine, you are branches," and calls us to abide in him. From this abiding, life flows, producing fruit that benefits ourselves and others. It's a natural, organic, repeatable process, flowing from the way God provides everything needed for the growth to happen.

Today's verses point to God the Father as the keeper of the vineyard - providing, protecting, producing. What a great gift to receive God's care and pass it on in the form of a fruitful life of discipleship. Abundant life begins with God, courses through us, and overflows on out into the world.

The other texts for today speak about turning points of obedience and faith in God. A failure to abide in God's way that leads to trouble in the garden. A longing fulfilled that satisfies a woman's heart and moves her to dedicate back to God what is most valuable to her. The death and burial of the Messiah, God's Son, and the movements of his followers to figure out what comes next, not yet knowing that Easter morning is just around the corner.

The life of the grapevine includes seasons of rapid growth, times of pruning, harmful and beneficial changes, challenges and joys, unknowns and faith, disappointments and victories. It's a long story, but with God's care, in time there are more blessings than we could ever expect.

Thank you, God, for calling us to be part of the life of the vine. Thank you for faithful care and for fruit that develops from our life with you. Tend to us in all the ways you see that we need, and bring our lives to a point where there is fruit in abundance, for ourselves and for all in need.

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