Jesus is telling the disciples a profound truth when He says, “This is how my Father shows who he is – when you produce grapes, when you mature as my disciples.” John 15:8
I imagine these chosen friends leaning in even closer to Messiah to hear how they might see God the Father because history had told them what He was like:
- The Father was a master Creator in the Genesis account.
- He was the exclusive God of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob bringing justice on their behalf and preserving them.
- To Moses He was like a burning bush and plagues and sustenance in the wilderness.
- The disciples themselves have seen the Father in his Son as they’ve travelled with him . . . healing, teaching, walking on water, feeding multitudes.
I wonder what they were expecting to come next when Jesus started with “This is how my Father shows who he is . . .”
Another voice from heaven in a dazzling light?
Something MORE than all they’ve known of the Father until now?
Do you think they might have been surprised when Jesus continues – “when you produce grapes, when you mature as my disciples”?
Huh? Can you say that again, Jesus? I didn’t hear all that . . . I was somewhere else.
Producing grapes? Becoming mature disciples? That sounds like a lot of work!
I understand how it might feel to expect Jesus to say one thing and He shifts the focus.
Every spring, our directional team for Tuesday Morning retreats to dream and plan and share what God is doing. Along with that, we listen for common themes to be led by the Holy Spirit as we plan for the coming year of ministry. I’ve been doing this for many years, so naturally, I expect things to follow a certain logical pattern of thought and generally confirm our focus of teaching God’s Word.
But last Spring as we met (Kathy A, Stacey K, Laura D, Laurie H, Marlys B, Katie K and I), I did NOT expect our common theme to be REVIVAL.
Wait, are you sure we heard that right?
We are a ministry about equipping. You know, getting women ready for God’s NEXT thing.
Revival seems like THE next thing. Will we know how to do that?
As a leader, revival sounds like a lot of work. I know how to survive in dark times, in hard seasons. I’m really better with HOPE. Revival is something I’ve watched from a distance.
Just like Jesus shared with His disciples at that last supper, He shares with us today. I will make our home together a prosperous home . . . and the world will see the Father in US as He revives our lives, as He produces fruit for all.
That does seems INCREDIBLE! God the Father shows Himself in our fruitfulness. My fruit, your fruit. That’s the way this inorganic, sin-soaked world is going to experience a bit of HOME with Jesus!
I’m deeply honored. I’m definitely humbled.
And this I know: I need to be with Jesus . . . in the Word . . . bowing my life to Him in prayer. Every. Day.
Along with that theme of Revival, as a team, we were also impressed with the need for PERSEVERANCE. Really, what it means to mature as disciples is to keep persevering with Jesus, to keep making ourselves at home with Him.
That is our our constant cry to God – “Help us mature as disciples of Jesus.”
As you begin this new year, I wonder if making your home with Jesus is a priority. Is the watching world able to see the Father reflected in your life?