During his message last Sunday Pastor Steve reference a “tree” – really just a branch, stuck in a pot and used as a sanctuary decoration during the Christmas season. The branch of course could not know it had been repurposed. It just did what it had always done: it sought nourishment and desired to grow. Evidently it had found some in the soil… in the place where it was “planted,“ stuck really, with no gardener’s care or expectation. But still, it had blossomed!
Pastor Steve’s eight-week sermon series is entitled “The Person, the Presence, and the Power off the Holy Spirit.” *
Now, as we look into this it is helpful to remember Jesus’ directive in John 15. “Abide in me,” He said. Like that branch… staying put…. In the pot… in the nourishing soil. It stayed the course and drew power from its source.
Here’s more of what Jesus told his disciples,
…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 you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. (John 15:4-8)
The sap working in that vine represents the working of the Holy Spirit in us! We need to draw from Him… fill our branches with His flow. “Be filled with the Spirit,” wrote Paul (Eph. 5:18). Then we too produce “fruit.” Paul talks about this in a letter he sent to the Galatians: “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” (Gal. 5:22-23). All good things, things that can nourish others, things that we may be able to generate to some degree but
things for which we need some other power to generate to their full.
The Person, the Presence, and the Power of the Holy Spirit. We need them all, and we need not fear any of them — the gentle dove which descended on Christ at His baptism (Matt. 3:16 Mark 1:10; Luke 3:22; John 1:32), the impetus to worship rightly (John 4:24), and the fruit-bearing power source in our lives (Gal. 5:22-23).
What do we need to do? The same basic stuff as that “tree” — seek nourishment, and desire to grow.
* Follow Pastor Steve’s message series by logging on to our website: www.lincolnbaptistchurch.ca and look under Media.