“He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more. You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.”
Insight: Before the grapevine produces any fruit, grape farmers refer to pruning as “training.” Then, grapevines grow branches that produce no fruit, and branches that produce too much fruit, which can all turn bitter. But a properly “trained” branch produces a good amount of good fruit.
Jesus wants his disciples to know that they are:
- Being “trained” by his message.
- Enduring hardships that produce “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”
- Encouraged to live closely to Christ by remaining in him.
Prayer: God, let us take comfort in your pruning and training. We want more and more of your fruit in our lives. If there is any undesirable fruit in us, I ask that you would prune it out. Amen