Many find the inner work involved with the bi-weekly questions VERY challenging. We’re not used to slowing down. We would rather have more content to absorb. We process some 74 GB of information a day, as much as someone in the 15th century might encounter during their lifetime. Yet, while our overloaded brains sort data like a supercomputer, our hearts remain mostly untutored. Without slowing down to disciple the heart, a transforming friendship with Jesus will elude us. Do the hard work. It matters!
The vine is often a symbol of Israel in the Old Testament:
You transplanted a vine from Egypt; you drove out the nations and planted it.
You cleared the ground for it, and it took root and filled the land.
In John 15, Jesus describes himself as the true vine and his disciples as branches of this authentic vine. Jesus’ description points to Israel’s failure as a degenerate vine:
I had planted you like a choice vine of sound and reliable stock. How then did you turn against me into a corrupt, wild vine?
Jesus is preparing his disciples for life without him. They can do nothing (of eternal value) apart from him. However, as his life flows through them, animating and empowering their lives, they will bear “much fruit.” Given the context, “much fruit” means “accomplish God’s eternal purpose and possibilities in this world.”
In what ways are you aware of God’s purpose and possibilities for your life? Pray about this, asking God to help you see what he sees.
Sabrine Heim, Andreas Keil, “Too Much Information, Too Little Time,” June 1, 2017, https://kids.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/frym.2017.00023.
Gaia Vince, “Cities: How crowded life is changing us”, May 16, 2013, https://www.bbc.com/future/article.