John 15:1-8

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, as I also 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. 5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6 If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7 If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

 

Have you ever been pursuing a direction and then all of a sudden something stops you in your tracks?

Thought things like “I'm not where I thought I would be by now”?

Things don't seem to be going my way

The branch is being pruned

 

Verse 2: 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.

Cuts off / Prunes - Both feel very similar

 

Prune when there is fruit to make it more fruitful

Keep going in this direction

Cut when there is no fruit

Save your energy for more fruitful directions

Pruning will lead to stress without proper perspective

 

When we are Stressed the first thing we say is "something needs to change"

New job / New marriage / New church

 

The role of the tree is to remain, and consequentially grow and be fruitful. The role of the tree is not to try and change its environment. We try and change our environment rather than letting the environment change us

Blessed are those who remain

 

John 6:60

Many Disciples Desert Jesus

60 On hearing it, many of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?”

61 Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, “Does this offend you? 62 Then what if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! 63 The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit[e] and life. 64 Yet there are some of you who do not believe.” For Jesus had known from the beginning which of them did not believe and who would betray him. 65 He went on to say, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless the Father has enabled them.”

66 From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.

67 “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve.

68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.”

 

The disciples desert they stop following Jesus, they choose to disconnect from the vine

Remain: continue to exist, especially after other similar or related people or things have ceased to exist.

 

What is your threshold?

Stress will test it and do its best to find the edge and push you over

Incorruptible conviction

 

Stress & Marriage

Stand firm on the Non-negotiable's

“I hate you” "Divorce" etc

 

Jeremiah 17:5-8 NIV

[5] This is what the Lord says: “Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who draws strength from mere flesh and whose heart turns away from the Lord. [6] That person will be like a bush in the wastelands; they will not see prosperity when it comes. They will dwell in the parched places of the desert, in a salt land where no one lives. [7] “But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. [8] They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”

 

Many are called few chosen

The process to go from called to chosen (to bear much fruit) is to remain

Consistency is better than brilliance

 

One of the great secrets to remaining is a thankful heart

Philippians 4:6&7

6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

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