Study: Recall a time in life when you were disconnected from God. What helped you restore your relationship with Christ?
Pray: How can you grow closer to the Lord today? What spiritual resources, sacraments, or fellowship can help you thrive?
Serve: Who in your life is disconnected right now? How can you reach out and help them?
The relationship between vine an branches is simple: the branches, connected to the vine, draw their strength and nourishment from it. Cut off, they die.
Raising grapes and making wine were crucial at the time of Jesus (and still important today) and this gardening image provides a powerful insight in two crucial aspects of human life.
- Drawing our strength from Christ
- Providing strength to others
As branches connected to Christ, we draw the grace we need from the Lord. It’s his death and resurrection that gives us life; his forgiveness that restores our relationships with God and one another; and his power that we call upon when we confront the obstacles and stumbling blocks in the world. Our lives, dependent on Christ, thrive with his life within us – in the Scriptures, the Sacraments, private prayer, and fellowship with one another.
Yet we also serve as sources of support for others, and the strength of our relationship with God directs our ability to recognize and respond to others. We cannot give what we don’t have, and as we support one another we pass on the grace we receive from Christ and share it with those we meet. Who are these key people who look to us? Some examples:
- parents and children
- extended family
Our lives are interconnected! Drawing strength from Christ – the central vine – we thrive; his strength in turn becomes the power which we extend into the hearts of those whose lives touch our own.
Today: draw near to Jesus and allow his love to fill our hearts! May we pour his love into the lives of each and every soul we meet!