John 15:5 – I am the Vine; you are the branches. Whoever lives in Me and I in him bears much (abundant) fruit. However, apart from Me [cut off from vital union with Me] you can do nothing. (AMP)
Last month, our first grandchild was stillborn.
During the days after we learned the distressing news that the pregnancy was at risk, up to the sad day of her delivery, our family used e-mail to call any believers we knew to join us in prayer.
At the same time as our family drama played out before us, the amaryllis bulb sitting on my dining room table unfolded its first bud. Over the next two weeks, five blooms eventually emerged.
With the first bud, the stem supporting the weight of the growing blossoms began to bow. I planted a yardstick beside the bulb in the pot and tied the stem to the stick, so the stick could share with the stem the weight of the flowers. I feasted my soul on the beauty of the gift those flowers brought during our time of sorrow. Also, I thought about the importance of the stick.
Jesus told us that He is the vine and we are the branches. I began to wonder what supports the grapevines in the kingdom of God. In a cultivated vineyard, we see stakes and wires supporting the vines, branches, and fruit.
Does the Holy Spirit call other people to support the vines and branches, to be stakes and wires, to stick with us, and to share the weight as we grow in union with Christ?
Is the church universal, the body of all believers, the vineyard?
The supportive e-mails, phone calls, and visits we received sure felt like stakes and wires as we sought for love, joy, peace, and all the other fruit of the Holy Spirit through our time of loss.
Prayer: Father, in the name of Christ, we give thanks for the people who support us. May we also seek to support others as we grow in Your kingdom. Amen.
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