Remain, Remain, Remain
“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.” (John 15:4-5, NIV)
As a writer, I know I can draw the reader’s attention or emphasize a special meaning by repeating a word or phrase multiple times. Knowing this, I am drawn to the repeated use of the word “remain” in this passage. Notice, Jesus used the word “remain” multiple times. We can see that Jesus was very insistent on this point.
Webster’s Dictionary defines “remain” as: to stay behind or continue in the same state or place; to go on or continue as before even after a departure or loss. We communicate this idea by saying, “Don’t take another step,” “Don’t move a muscle,” “Freeze,” “Hold it right there,” or “Don’t even blink.” We use these expressions when we feel threatened or afraid. In these moments, we must remember to be perfectly still and remain in Jesus.
As a Christian, I confess that this is hard for me to do at times. It seems that like a young child, I get distracted and wander off. I have learned that I’m on the move and getting off track whenever I start using the word “I” multiple times in a sentence. Whenever I do this, I force myself to stop mid-sentence. I ask the Holy Spirit to teach me, help me and lead me. I immediately change my thoughts and speech to “We” and allow my spirit to remain in Jesus. I pray that the Holy Spirit will open and close every door in my path that would take me away from the will of God for my life. I remind myself that my life can only bear rich and abundant fruit as long as I remain in Jesus.
Child of God, I encourage you to ask God to show you any area of your life where you have wandered off or strayed away. Ask Him where you edged Him out and said, “I got this.” Ask Him to help you to continue, to go on, to stay right there and remain in Him!
Lord, thank you for your presence in my life. Jesus, be the vine of life and do not depart from me. Help me resist the urge to wander off that I might bear rich fruit in my life all for your glory. Through the blood of Jesus and in the name of Jesus I pray, amen.
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