“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. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.” (John 15:1-4)
One of the greatest things we could ever learn is that we are to live in God’s strength and not try to work it up ourselves. The strength, the power, the confidence, the assurance in Jesus that He gives us comes when we lean back on Him and not try to produce it ourselves. That’s exactly what He was telling the disciples, “You are to live a dependent life.” The power of the Christian life is that of dependency!
It is just like a game of opposites. You know, golf is like that. Now I am about to give you a golf lesson today. Your golf swing is very important. When you swing to the right and you allow the club head to approach the ball from an overhead direction, do you know what happens? The ball goes to the left. If you swing to the left and it cuts the ball – it goes to the right. It is a strange kind of deal. Have you also noticed (you who are golfers), when you swing easy, it goes far? When you swing hard, you mess up. What’s that about? It’s about life.
The same thing happens when we learn how to live in God’s strength out of dependence upon Him. We become strong. When you are trying and say, “Hey, I can do it on my own. God, I don’t need your help. If I need your help, I’ll ask for it. In fact, God you have other things to be concerned about rather than me. I’ll do my best. I’ll make it through. I’ll suck it up. I’ll duck my head. I’ll get through.” — That reveals spiritual immaturity. It shows that you don’t know where strength is located. You and I need to realize that in the midst of loss, much less in the even greatest of times, the power of the Christian life is tapped when we lean back on Him and depend upon Him. That’s not using God as a crutch, that’s learning how to live life with great power and confidence. That’s what He was telling the disciples. You live in me and you stay in Me and you are going to bear much fruit in your life. Live today with a clear-cut dependence.