“I chose you…that you might…bear fruit—fruit that will last.” Jn 15:16 NIV
When Jesus said, “I chose you…that you might…bear fruit—fruit that will last,” He was saying, “Spend your life in pursuit of that which has lasting significance and eternal value!” What does He mean by “fruit”? “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control” (Gal 5:22-23 NIV). Those nine qualities describe the only life that’s truly worth living. Fortunately, you’re not left to produce this kind of fruit by self-effort. Indeed, you may as well try to pick yourself up by your own bootstraps! No, Jesus said this: “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful…No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (Jn 15:1-2, 4-5 NIV). Who is Jesus speaking to? Believers. “Every branch in me” (v. 2 NIV). Who is the gardener? “My Father is the gardener” (v. 1 NIV). What’s His goal? For you to be “even more fruitful” (v. 2 NIV). What’s the secret of fruitfulness? Constant contact and intimacy with Jesus. “If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit” (v. 5 NIV). So, if you want to be more fruitful, draw closer to the Lord.