God’s been speaking to my heart about bearing fruit a lot lately. Seems like every time I turn around, I’m being reminded that those who are in Him – and with Him – bear good fruit. It’s hard for me not to do a ‘check’ when I hear those words. “Lord? Am I not bearing fruit?” It shows you how used-to Satan’s accusation I am.
After the ‘check’, and lots of prayer, I’ve come to the conclusion that I think He’s actually trying to encourage me. And the verses in the bible relating to this are meant to encourage us as well.
John 15 (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John%2015&version=AMP) really opened my eyes this morning. I think many of us grew up thinking that if we weren’t bearing fruit that God would just do-away with us. But Jesus said that just by having His words spoken over us, we are already in the other category — the people who are being pruned back to bear more fruit. There was a promise in that for me this morning. The promise that I could do nothing, and have His words spoken over me, and it would spark me to bear fruit. That He’s the author of growth, transformation, and maturity, and I can just rest in Him for that. In the world of psychobabble that we live in today, that was a breath of fresh air. But it’s also something that I can say has really happened in my life.
Almost five years ago, I came to the Vineyard almost dead. Pretty much all the spark out of me had been ashened over. Having the gospel said over me by people who knew why it was the good news brought me back to life. It’s good news because union with God starts now, not once we die. It was good news because I didn’t have to feel like I was one of the branches who had not born fruit and so I should just dismiss myself from God’s kingdom. No. God was so gracious, so loving, so merciful that he allowed me to just sit and have his word wash over me to remind me of who He created me to be and to redeliver purpose. And that allowed me to bear much fruit.
There’s an even more to be excited about in that passage though: It says “This is my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”
Read that again.
We can bring God glory. Not just our praise. Not just something that He says “that was good.” We can bring Him GLORY.
Let me define glory for you: very great praise, honor, or distinction 2.something that is a source of honor, fame, or admiration; a distinguished ornament or an object of pride 3. adoring praise or worshipful thanksgiving 4. resplendent beauty or magnificence 7. the splendor and bliss of heaven; heaven.