I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you’re joined with me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant.
We all have dreams, goals, even aspirations for our life. I was taught very early in life to work for those things that will have the greatest impact. Not only in my own life, but my dad taught me that it was always important to live a life that would positively impact those around you. Yeah, sounds like right out of “Ozzie and Harriet”. But dad impressed upon me early that what we say, what we do, how we live affects more people around you than you might think. Dad was a man of incredible integrity. Thank you dad for all you poured into my life.
I endeavored to live a life based on what I was taught. I tried to reach and stretch and figure everything out. I found that being an adult and trying to live out what dad had taught was more difficult than I could ever think. Oh, for a time I felt I was pretty successful. I thought I had learned all that I could about being someone who looked to others first. But there was a fatal flaw in that thinking. The effort was void of Jesus.
I’ve given my testimony many times in writing this blog, but today what I want to say is without an intimate relationship with Jesus; where you are joined together with Him on the Vine, your efforts are destined to fail. Did I believe what my dad taught me? Yes. Do I often look back at what dad was teaching and feel blessed? Yes. Well, then, what’s wrong? Self. It’s self that is wrong. Humans are fallible and we are prone to pride.
Recently, I was meditating and praying to God and I found myself saying in prayer, “Lord, I still have dreams that mean so much to me. Dreams for the life I live with Nancy; dreams for our future. Lord, will they come to pass.” Then I began to weep. I felt that maybe somewhere along the road to this place, I had made the wrong turn. Not in error by following Jesus, but maybe I had missed something. That maybe some of the things I was facing, that caused me to wonder if the Lord knew what my dreams were, was because I failed. Then something happened. I was lovingly rebuked. I felt the Lord say, “I know what your dreams are. And where you are right now is where I want you to be. I’ll take care of the rest.”
Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” I know this Scripture. I know it in my heart and it resides on my lips. Yet, I needed the Lord to again remind me of it. I am not ashamed, I’m even more in love with Jesus than ever before. His words to me were not something that I heard in an audible way, but it might just have been. It was loud and clear. I heard His words by the touch of His hand upon my heart.
I don’t know if there is anyone else out there that has felt like I did. I don’t know if there is anyone else that would question the Lord about their future as I did. But let me encourage you if you are saying to yourself, “Yup, that’s me.” The Lord knows what lies ahead. He loves you with an everlasting love. And He is absolutely true to the promises of His Word. And the more intimate we are in our relationship with Jesus, the more we are inseparable from Him. And together, the harvest is sure to be abundant.
Dear Lord, thank You for Your everlasting love. Thank You for understanding and Your promise to give us a future and a hope. I know that Your plans are perfect and will lead me into Your glorious presence. Forgive me Lord if my pride takes my thoughts far from you. Take me by the hand and lead me back into Your grace and mercy. In Jesus Name. AMEN
Don’t believe me, believe God!