The campfire was slowing dying and only embers glowed in the dark, still night around me. It was such a peaceful night with millions of stars shining overhead. It had been a restful weekend away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Now as I sat facing the fire, I was mesmerized by what the roaring fire had become.
Those glowing embers harkened a question, “Had I allowed my vibrant faith to die down to the point it was in risk of being of no value?” I pondered the thought. “No,” I could honestly answer it was not there yet, but if I allowed the busyness of life to continue at its current pace, it could easily arrive there. I hungered for more and I know God did too. Life was pulling me away from my quality time with my Savior. I still did a quick devotion each morning and offered hurried prayers, but the deep fellowship with Him was hit or miss and it showed in my attitudes and responses to others. I needed to refocus my priorities and ensure my quiet time was about getting alone with God and not just offering up the “I need” prayers and a check off my to-do list.
As I dug deeper in His Word and spent more time in God’s presence, my peace and joy returned. I was less judgmental and more willing to offer grace and mercy to those around me. I was more patient with my children and husband. As I spent time with my Savior, the fruit of my relationship with Christ returned. John 15:1-11 (ESV) was, and is, a great reminder for me, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. As the Father has loved me, so have I 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.”
This scripture really summarized my need for daily fellowship with God. When I tap into His vine, I receive the nutrients I need to produce godly fruit and experience the joy of living this life. When I am in vibrant relationship with God, I have more I can give to the hurting world around me. As it states in Matthew 5:14-16, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
Tap into the vine today by taking some time with your Savior. He will fill you and fan the flame of your heart so you can burn brightly and produce righteous fruit that can only come from connection to His vine. It will be the most rewarding part of your day.