Fired by love's urgent longings, I am his rocketman.
Fruit

Fruit

I have been thinking about the life we are offered in Christ.  The scriptures are full of the promises of God which invite us to live an exalted and abundant life in him.  In particular, I have been meditating on the passage from the Gospel of John, where Jesus refers to himself as the vine and us as the branches.

Abide in me, and I in you … He who abides in me, and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing … If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you … As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in my love.  If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.  These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.  (John 15:

If I dwell in him, He will dwell in me.  If I live in him, He will live in me.  If I rest in Him, He will rest in me.  If His words dwell in me, if His words live in me, if His words rest in me, I will ask whatever I will and it will be done for me?

Jesus loves me just the same as the Father has loved Him.  He tells me to dwell in his love, to live in his love, to rest in his love.

If I do what he asks me to, I will dwell in His love, live in his love and rest in his love.  This is exactly what Jesus did and this is what He expects me do.  He believes I can.

Just like the woman caught in adultery, Jesus said to her, “go and sin no more”, believing that she would do exactly what he told her to do.

I see what he wants for me, joy, complete, full over-flowing joy!

This is the high life in Christ.  Life empowered by the Holy Spirit, lived in faith, inspired by hope, and pursued in love.  As companions for the journey, He gives me peace to rule in my heart and the promise of complete joy.

It seems so simple that even children can understand it — as they often do.  It sounds to good to be true, but its not.  In fact, I wonder if me miss the very thing we are looking for because of its simplicity.  I suppose we are naturally suspicious of anything that appears to be both simple and to good to be true.
Ahhh, we are well trained.

Of course, there is a price to be paid, but it’s not what we think.  We simply have to keep his commandments, that is, to do whatever he tells us to do.  His commandments are not burdensome because they lead us into the very thing made for and desire above everything else:  life in Him.

Paul tells us what we need to do:

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassion, kindness, lowliness, meekness, and patience, forbearing one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.  And over all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.  And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body.  And be thankful.  Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, as you teach and admonish one another in all wisdom, and as you sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs with thankfulness in your hearts to God.  And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

If I dwell in Christ, if I live in Him, if I rest in Him, I can do all of these things, because He will do them in me.  If I do these things, then I will dwell in Christ, I will live in Him and I will rest in Him.
If I do these things, I will dwell in love, live in love and rest in love.

If I do these things, I will keep his commandments.  If I do these things, I will bear fruit.  If I do these things,  I will ask whatever I will and He will do it for me.  If I do these things, peace will rule in my heart and my joy will be complete.

I have tried this before.  In fact, I am continually working at this.  It’s a journey, but it’s one worth taking.  I am called to be just like Jesus “because as he is in the world so are we”.  Of course, I have not yet obtained this nor am I perfect.

Nevertheless, “… I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own … forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”  (Philippians 3:12-14)

So I will press on; I will persevere remembering that “I can do all things in Christ who strengthens me” and “[f]or this I toil, striving with all energy which he mightily inspires within me.”  (Col 1:29)

“He who calls [us] is faithful, and he will do it.”  (1 Thessalonians 5:24)

 

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