John 14:6 – Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (NIV)
John 15:5 – I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. (NIV)
Our Bible study group meets in the evening, down in a large basement room at our rural church. There is a row of small windows in the room, but in the depth of winter, the only light from outside is the twinkling of stars on a cloudless night. Two of the ceiling lights were out, and for several weeks, I meant to bring replacement bulbs and change them. Finally one night, I did remember, and I looked forward to the extra light that they would give. I replaced the first one, but to my surprise, the new bulb didn't work; neither did the second.
It was only then that it occurred to me to check the source of their power. Sure enough, after finding and flicking a well-hidden switch out in the hallway, they both came on. They had always been on a different circuit from the others in the room.
We had a laugh about the simple solution to the problem and went on to talk about our own need to check the source of the spiritual power that we require to live each day. It is so natural to try to plow through a day in our own strength. However, Jesus made it abundantly clear not only that He wants to be our Source, but also that He is the only source who gives us life … and truth … and the way.
When I first became a Christian, John 15:5 troubled me: "apart from me you can do nothing." Did He really mean "nothing"? But over the years, the Holy Spirit has helped me to discover the truth of Jesus' words. Just as a branch cut off from a vine withers and dies, so you and I cannot find real life if we are not connected to the right Source. There's no false humility in saying, "Yes, Jesus, apart from You, I can do nothing."
Prayer: Father, we thank and praise You for loving us so much that You sent Jesus into our world. Help us each day to be and to stay connected to Him, the one true Source of life. Amen.
Listen to this devotional
Listen while you read: "The Wise May Bring Their Learning" (Lyrics)