November 20, 2022
Gospel – 5/13/20 – John 15:1-8
Jesus said to his disciples:
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower.
He takes away every branch in me that does not bear fruit,
and everyone that does he prunes so that it bears more fruit.
You are already pruned because of the word that I spoke to you.
Remain in me, as I remain in you.
Just as a branch cannot bear fruit on its own
unless it remains on the vine,
so neither can you unless you remain in me.
I am the vine, you are the branches.
Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit,
because without me you can do nothing.
Anyone who does not remain in me
will be thrown out like a branch and wither;
people will gather them and throw them into a fire
and they will be burned.
If you remain in me and my words remain in you,
ask for whatever you want and it will be done for you.
By this is my Father glorified,
that you bear much fruit and become my disciples.”
When life is easy, it’s not hard to be a good, faithful disciple. But when we’re attacked from every side – what then? When we are put to the test, how do we respond? Do we continue to follow God and bear fruit? Or, do we wither – hide from the struggles and cease to produce – avoiding the attacks to protect ourselves?
Jesus tells us today that the struggles – the pruning – can make us more fruitful. But, if we don’t face them – we will be cut off from the vine where we wither and die – swept up and thrown on the fire and burned up.
If we continue to hear him and follow him, he will continue in us and his works – his fruits – will continue – in us.
At least that’s what I heard Him say…