I am sure that you all know the song, “This Little Light of Mine.” I want you to help me sing that song this morning. While we sing it, I’m going to hold this light up and let it shine all around. Hey the light’s not shinning !!! I wonder what is wrong, my light isn’t shining. Oh, here’s the problem, my light isn’t plugged in.
In our Bible lesson today, Jesus told his disciples a story to teach them the importance of staying connected to him. Of course Jesus didn’t use a lamp to tell his story, because electricity hadn’t even been invented yet. Instead, Jesus used an example that his disciples would understand. He used the example of a vine. You know what a vine is, don’t you? It is a plant with a lot of branches growing out from it. The branches have fruit on them. If it is a grapevine, the branches should have grapes on them.
Have you ever seen a branch that has been broken off of a tree or a vine? What happens to it? That’s right, it withers up and dies. Can it ever have any fruit on it again? No, it isn’t any good for anything — except fire wood.
Jesus said, “I am the vine and you are the branches. If you remain in me, you will have much fruit, but apart from me, you can do nothing.” Jesus wants us to produce a lot of fruit. Good fruit like being kind, generous, and faithful. Most of all, he wants us to love others as he has loved us.
Can we do that on our own? No way. Just as the lamp must be plugged in before its light can shine, and just as the branches must be connected to the vine before they can produce fruit, you and I must stay connected to Jesus to produce the good fruit that God expects of us.
Closing prayer: Dear Father, help us to remember that we need to stay plugged in to Jesus if we are going to produce the kind of fruit you expect. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.