This particular passage is very precious to me as it was something the Lord spoke to me in 2006 when we were at the International Foursquare Pastors Conference. It was at that time, I was still grieving the closure of our church New Horizons that we had planted in
While sitting in an evening session, I was listening to a pastor speak on Joel 2 and the greater days ahead. As I looked down at my name badge, it had written on it, “Jayme Hamilton,
It’s now August of 2010 and as of last week, I no longer reside in
Yesterday, I opened up the special devotion Pastor Jeff has asked us to do this week which was in John 15. John 15:1-8 says, “‘I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2He 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. 3You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4Remain 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. 5"I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. 6If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. 7If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. 8This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.’”
The verse that particularly spoke to me was verse 2 about cutting off the dead branches and even cutting off the fruitful branches. If you are familiar with gardening, the branches that die on the plant or vine, literally suck the life away from the plant. It’s kind of a gardening oxymoron. The dead branches have to be cut off if the plant is going to survive. On the other hand, the branches that do produce fruit or flowers have to be cut back so that they will produce more the next time around.
This move to some degree has been like that for me. I’ve had to purge so much of me in this move, not just materially, but emotionally too. I currently am feeling lost and as though I am bare. My heart seems to be empty and the dreams I once had for
Gardenia’s are my favorite flower. A month before we moved, I bought a gardenia plant and put it in a pot. It did not bloom for the whole month that I had it while I lived in