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. 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. 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. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. John 15:4-8
I'm an introvert at my core, but often the reason why I don't call or text my friends and family is that I'm waiting for my dead phone to resurrect itself. My iPhone has seen better days. The screen is cracked in a million places due to an unexpected encounter with the pavement while running.
A spotty battery has me playing the game of "what inconvenient time will my phone die?" on a daily basis. Often, the winning guess is either right before lunch or when I'm picking up my girls from school. My phone's favorite trick is saying it’s at 50% and then a second later shutting off inexplicably.
Not a big deal, you say? Just plug it in, let it charge for a few minutes, and I'll be good to go, right? Nope. For this magical dream to come true, it would require a semi-functional charging port, which it doesn't have. No cable can make a consistent connection. The prongs don't grip tight enough.
Granted, this issue does allow me to live out my childhood dreams of being MacGyver. For instance, my phone is currently propped up on a picture frame with the duct tape cable dangling at the precise angle needed to charge. Unfortunately, I have to stand very still because if I sneeze, type on my laptop too hard, or even blink, the connection disappears.
Without a stable connection to a power source, my iPhone is useless. It has no life and sits there unused. It can't function. Neither can it accomplish the tasks it was designed for by its creator. The same holds true for us.
When we reflect on the growth and transformation we hope to see in our lives, we can quickly forget the importance of staying connected to a consistent power source. Instead, we rely solely upon on our strength, wisdom, perspective, and effort to get the job done. The pace and pressure amp up which drains our energy reserve. We might see temporary change or immediate results, but they aren't sustainable over the long haul. The new thing will inevitably fizzle out before it even begins to come to life.
Eventually, our battery, better known as our heart, reverts to 'power save' mode by either shutting down, growing frustrated or settling for status quo. Scripture backs up this point. Jesus says that if we remain connected to Him we can accomplish great things, but apart from Him, we can do nothing. Remaining planted produces perseverance and persistence. God honors our effort when we rely on His strength.
Reframing our perspective, understanding our purpose, identifying our next steps and filling our heart with hope requires us to stay connected to Christ. Don't take this link for granted. Make refueling your heart and soul a priority.
How would you describe your current connection level to Christ? What is either preventing a connection or fueling it?
Where are you relying on your strength and wisdom to get things accomplished?
God, You offer hope, healing, and comfort. You provide wisdom, insight, and guidance. You encourage, spur on, and challenge. All of these things are at my disposal if I'm willing to stay connected to You. Remind me that Your love is the source that powers my heart to accomplish great things in this world. In Your name, Jesus. Amen.