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Summary: The Atlantic began to come in; its mighty shoulders underneath the boats lifted—lifted until the derelict had to come. The youth had harnessed infinite energy to his task.

5B

"Apart from me you can do nothing."

One of the most difficult acts of self-discipline in the spiritual life is to concentrate on the present moment: "age quod agis", which means do what you are doing, concentrate on the present.

Staying connected; to be sustained and nourished.

Then we can experience the joy of Jesus' oneness with the Fathert that will also fill our lives.

True vine--absolute dependency on Him for life and growth.

E.g. A Japanese warrior was captured by his enemies and thrown info prison. AIl night he could not sleep for he was convinced that he would be tortured the next morning.

Then the words of his master came to his mind. “Tomorrow is not real. The only reality is now. "

So, he came to the present-and fell asleep.

The person over whom the future has lost its grip. How like the birds of the air and the lilies of the field. No anxieties for tomorrow. Total presence in the now. Holiness! The sacrament of the present moment.

2. He prunes. The Father must trim away our selfishness to increase our growth in love. Pruning probably refers to the trials and fatherly discipline we experience in this life.

E.g. There was an old derelict ship that was to be lifted from the bottom of the sea.

In one of the tidal rivers near New York, the building of a bridge was interrupted by a derelict sunk in the river’s bottom.

Divers put chains about the obstacle and all day long the engineer directed the maneuvering of tugs as they puffed and pulled in vain endeavor to dislodge the hulk.

Then a young student, fresh from technical school, asked for the privilege of trying, and from the vexed, impatient operations chief obtained his wish.

“What will you do it with?” the engineer inquired. “The flat-boats in which we brought the granite from Vermont,” the young man answered. So, when the tide was out, the flat-boats were fastened to the derelict.

The Atlantic began to come in; its mighty shoulders underneath the boats lifted—lifted until the derelict had to come. The youth had harnessed infinite energy to his task.

To the consciousness of such resource in the spiritual world Christ has introduced his people by the vine and branches.

[source: The Minister As Shepherd, SAGE Publications, June 21, 2016, pg. 181]

3. The word "abide" means to endure without yielding, to bear patiently, to tolerate, to withstand; to remain stable or in a fixed state, to continue in a place."

When the Lord said, "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides [remains] in Me" (6:56), He meant that Holy Communion is to abide in Him.

My Cursillo friend Peter Roth has a business card that says, “Peter Roth, branch” --In baptism, we were given a new name: Branch. Connected deeply, mysteriously, to Christ, the true Vine.

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