Here is how today’s guest poster, Mo Mydlo, describes herself; I am blessed to be a child of God. I am honored to be married to my husband Tommy of 20 years, and I am overjoyed and my cup runneth over to be raising four spectacular kids; Jake, Trav, Sara and Eli. I am a stay at home author, speaker, and lover of the Word of God. I need it, I ache for it and I am obsessed with Jesus, who is the Word made flesh. He is my everything, and I am nothing without HIM.
Mo blogs at Unforsaken Ministries, please be sure to check her out.
We had an awesome Florida thunderstorm the other day. If you think you have experienced a rain and thunder storm and you haven’t seen a Florida one, you still have something to experience. Yes, it was the normal afternoon 15 minute boomer that came through after a fun day outside swimming and enjoying the Florida sunshine. Our Florida storms are amazing. They can shake the windows, sacrifice pool umbrellas, flood potted plants and create hail that can sound like a snare drum is coming through the house. They usually only last a few minutes and then the sun is back out, but boy you better take cover when they show up.
Well, this morning I went outside and noticed that one of my gorgeous oak trees out back on either sides of my pool had been hit by lightening, as a huge branch had severed itself from the rest of the tree and it was hanging by a thread. It looked like my husband intentionally went out and cut off a third of the tree. I told Tommy and he hauled it away from the tree so we could burn the dead branches. God showed me something in my Spirit as I looked at it. He showed me how withered that branch had become in such a short length of time.
My tree out back is green and lush and full of cardinals and blue jays and woodpeckers, but this branch was discolored, withered and dead. This literally happened in less than a day. Why? It was cut off from it’s life source. This branch was severed from the tree and it lost every chance it had to live a lush, vibrant life. My friend, the same happens to us when we fail to abide in Christ.
The Word says in John 15: 4-8; “Remain in me and I will 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 a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown in the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish and it will be given to you. This is to my Father’s glory that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”
What does it mean to remain in the vine? Well, just like my branches died out back that were disconnected from the trunk of the tree that holds all of the life giving minerals that the branches need, we fail to produce any fruit without staying connected to our source Jesus and His Word. We remain in the vine by staying connected. We receive the bread of life and the well of water that wont ever leave us dry by clinging to Jesus and never attempting to go it alone. We are unable to produce fruit, withered up because of disconnection.
How do we stay connected? We dwell, we stay, we remain in Him. We talk to Jesus about everything. We seek His will and pray about each decision we need to make. We plug in to a body of believers that will encourage us in the faith. We dig in to scripture like choice meat that our body desires. We study the bible like our lives depend on it, because they do.
Oh, I have felt withered before. I have worked myself to the bone trying to do “good things” that I thought God was calling me to do, when I hadn’t even asked Him if He had. When all of the time, He was just waiting for me to fall on my knees and worship Him as my source of life.
I have felt withered when I thought my defense mechanisms to fight anxiety were working, only to find myself in fear and worry over and over again, when my Jesus was right there waiting to carry my burdens and ease my pain.
I have felt withered when I tried to be everything to everyone around me, and I failed to remember that I had physical, emotional and Spiritual needs that were being neglected. Oh, I felt withered, until God reminded me is God and I am not.
Yes, I have learned the hard way to stay connected to vine. I have learned the hard way that if I don’t remain in Him, I am fruitless. But, thank you Jesus, God wasn’t completely done with me. I wasn’t carried off to the burn pile just yet. There were a few sparks of green on the vine, and God picked me up and grafted me back in and poured His nourishing sap of love all throughout my being.
Yes, our Daddy desires that we stay connected to Him. He doesn’t want us doing this life alone. He is the Spectacular Gardener of life.
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Scott works with followers of Christ to energize discipleship, improve relationships, decrease anxiety and facilitate leadership development. He is a certified coach specializing in pastoral leadership, relationships, discipleship, life transitions, and Christian identity. Also, I am the author of the forthcoming book Discovering Your Root: Developing Your Identity in Christ.
Services offered are one-on-one coaching, group coaching, speaking at organizations/churches, leadership workshops, and church retreats. For more info, click here to contact Scott.