Summary: This sermon shows the positive benefits of choosing to abide in Christ.
“Getting connected” (pt. 1)
BY CHOOSING TO ABIDE IN CHRIST...
1. You can be useful to God! (vs. 5, 6)
“...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 into the fire and burned.” John 15:5 (quickview) ,6 (NIV)
2. You can be answered by God! (vs. 7)
There was an elderly woman, who resided next to an affirmed atheist, in an older suburb. This woman received a meager social security survivor’s benefit. Although, her finances only afforded her not even the most basic meal plans, daily she would open her windows to give thanks & prayer unto GOD. Finally one day, the middle of the month arrived and she had not received her check. Instead of complaining, she opened her windows, fell on her knees and began to thank GOD and pray. The neighbor was sitting on his porch and overheard her praying "Lord although I don’t have any food in my home, I know you will provide!" The neighbor thought to himself, this is a great opportunity to prove to her there is no god. So he hurriedly went to the store, purchased a car load of groceries. Upon arriving home he placed them on her porch, rang her doorbell and hid in the bushes to spring his surprise. Finally, the elderly woman made her way to the door. She opened the door, saw all the groceries and rejoiced in the Lord!!.. about that time the neighbor jumped out from behind the bushes and exclaimed. God is not real, I bought those groceries there. To this the old woman exclaimed, "I knew my God would supply my needs, but I didn’t know he would make the devil pay for them!"
3. You can be surrounded with the love of God! (vs. 9-10)
"As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love.” John 15:9-10 (quickview)  (NIV)
4. You can be filled with the joy of God! (vs. 11)
“Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior.” Habakkuk 3:17 (quickview) , 18 (NIV)