John 15:8 - (Jesus said) "By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be My disciples."
A healthy, thriving plant is a plant that reproduces and bears fruit. Its roots take hold, reaching deep into the soil, nourishing its structure from bottom to top.
Likewise, Jesus' disciples are people—God's branches—who bear fruit. As Christians our lives have been redeemed for service and praise so that we can bless the lives of others and magnify God by how we live. This, unfortunately, is not always the case. We may hear the call to help—the call to get involved in the fruit-bearing process—but then, for whatever reason, not respond to that call. In the end, it's easy to take God's provision for granted.
But God empowers us through His Word and His Spirit at work in our lives. He nourishes the tree; He provides everything we need to carry His message of grace forward into the lives of others. It is Him alone who makes this possible. Though 10,000 witnesses had seen the risen Christ, we would remain as doubting Thomas if the Holy Spirit had not convinced us of this truth. It was God's grace, which allowed these many witnesses to see the risen Lord firsthand. That same grace allows us to see Him through the eyes of faith.
But what about those people who do not know Jesus? How do we respond to them?
In Lutheran Hour Ministries' global outreach, the Good News of Jesus reaches millions yearly through the Word spoken to them and through the hands-on efforts of dedicated Christians in the United States and around the world. God blesses His branches, His people, throughout the world, that they may bear fruit and so glorify the Father above. And the same grace that allows us to see Him through the eyes of faith, will also be at work in the lives of others for them to see.
The ascended Lord Jesus continues to bless His church on earth with ambassadors of His life-giving Gospel. He calls pastors and teachers and lay people everywhere, and He supplies them with the wisdom and resources they need to proclaim God's Word faithfully.
We have been set aside for a special purpose—one given to us by God and meant to a beacon to those around us. The Word of God tells us, "You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for His own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light" (1 Peter 2:9).
There is fruit to be born in our lives, and God is ready to make that happen. He sent His Son to die for us and for our sins. He brought us to faith in Him. Of all the people in the world, we are privileged to share His Good News with others.
THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, move us through Your Holy Spirit so others may witness Your love through our lives. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by a contributing writer for Lutheran Hour Ministries.
1. What are some of the ways God nourishes His branches—His people?
2. How is God glorified by fruit production in our lives?
3. Do you feel like God can use you to bear fruit for Him?
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