Summary: About being faithful to what God wants for our lives
Later today many of us will be attending commencement ceremonies for high school and college graduates. When I read today’s scripture I was reminded of the sermon I gave at the Baccalaureate last Sunday evening. I explained to the students that what ever they do in life reflects back on their communities, moreover they are the living examples of their home towns and families.
In today’s Gospel reading Jesus paints the picture of him being the vine and us being the branches of the vine. We are all familiar with the picture, we have symbols of it in our stain glass windows, our banners, and elsewhere in the church. But what does it mean for us today? And what does God want us to take from this reading?
I) I think my title says it all. Remain in me and I will remain in you. In other words be faithful to me and I will make your life fruitful.
A) Jesus compares our faith in Christ to a vine branch. When we live for Christ and do all we can in the name of Christ our lives are blessed.
1) In some circles it is preached, when doing social mission do not talk about Christ. That comes later. The reasoning being it is more important to help the person then express why you are doing.
2) God wants us to always and anywhere to give him praise. 19 After greeting them, he related one by one the things that God had done among the Gentiles through his ministry. 20 When they heard it, they praised God. Then they said to him, “You see, brother, how many thousands of believers there are among the Jews, and they are all zealous for the law. Acts 21:18-21
B) By not giving Credit where Credit is due we cut ourselves off from the vine. Our gifts and talents are not ours but an extension of the Holy Spirit.
II) So what does God want people to be or to do?
A) To build on last week, God wants us to be aware of and thankful for the blessings brought into our lives.
B) We need to be conscious of all that we receive in life comes from God.
C) Live our lives in grateful thanksgiving, always willing to share the gift love he has given you.
III) If we took this passage seriously how differently could we view church?
A)So without getting into the nitty gritty of this church, I do see ourselves working at taking this passage serious. We do give thanks and know where to place it.
B) I think on the broader sense though we need to always our thankfulness for all we do and whom we do it for.
C) If we are not afraid to express where we come from, I see a church that can go forth and be what it is truly meant to be.
Jesus reminded us that without him we are nothing, that we cannot live. In fact nothing in the universe would exist if it weren’t for the power of God and the grand plan of Creation. I recently had heard a sermon where the pastor stated; “God didn’t create humanity because He didn’t need some one to love him. God created humanity so He could love us.”
So when we go into the world as that branch on the vine, the fruit we bear, reflects on the love we have for Jesus Christ. So let our fruit continue to bear witness to how grateful we are to the mercy, love and kindness shown to us by a God who wants to love us Amen.