Sunday May 25, 2014
10:30 AM Service: Stay Connected
Elder Bernadine Franks (GEM) John 15:1-4 (NIV) Teaching that we should “stay connected”. We have the ability to communicate with others throughout the day, throughout the world thanks to technological advances. Although, with these advances, we are able to connect, but we are sometimes frustrated because we don’t have the ability to stay connected due to one issue or another. The same goes for our salvation walk. Our struggle isn’t with our getting to Jesus…enjoying conversion, enjoying the process of sanctification, anxiously awaiting the great day of glorification. Why can’t everyday be like conversion day? Why can’t we just stay connected to Jesus? As we track through our everyday lives, struggle through our marriages and relationships, seek to find solutions in our communities, there are days that we are not connected to and with the God of our salvation. There are days when we are not as sensitive to God, when our intimacy seems to be in jeopardy, when the Word of God doesn’t open up with such clarity, when the sin brought before God prohibits us from getting as close to Him as we want to, when those that are in our circle of friends are on satan’s payroll that become strategically perfect at pushing our buttons…causing us to become stagnant in our spiritual progression and to lose connection with God. We go to God asking for forgiveness during this time of struggle. We must remain loyal to God, not for what He has done/will do, but for who He is.
The Word says that He is the “true vine”, not the soil. We should be the fruit on the branches. For anything that the soil tries to deliver has to go through Him. Many of us, in our struggles, try to connect directly to the soil, forgoing God’s sieve, connecting us to things that we should have never been connected to and preventing us from being the fruit on the vine…reaping what we sow. Whether we are dealing with our sown situations or the location of where we’re planted, God has his plan. In the midst of it all, recognize that you still have your joy, your peace, and you are still connected. It’s not where you’re planted, it’s where you’re connected. God’s expecting Jesus, the vine, to bear fruit, for “He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit”. Stay connected to the branch, where God has planted you, which does bear fruit, for “while every branch that does bear fruit He prunes so that it will be even more fruitful”. Continue to bear fruit, even bruised it may be, and God will prune allowing your good fruit to bear.