Day 10: Submitting to the Process

John 15:5-8
“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. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples."

As we look at yesterday’s devotional, we understand that we cannot bear fruit on our own; however, we still have a choice. We can either abide in Christ and remain in Him or we don’t. These Scripture verses show us that any branch that does not bear fruit is a waste. However, in order for growth and “abiding” to happen in our lives we must submit to the process of just being in His Presence.

As we take the next 21 Days to know God’s heart more through prayer, I believe we need to ask ourselves and the Lord these questions regularly: 
  • Are we spending the time we need with Him so that He has the space to speak into our lives and decisions? 
  • Do we stay still enough for Him to say words like, “My child, that ______________ is not doing much for you. I love you and I need to “snip” that off from your life. Will you let me?”
Remember that following Jesus is a process. If Jesus compares himself being a gardener in the vineyard of our lives, then that process takes time and regularity of giving Him access. This is why prayer, community, church, etc. are so important. This process of following Christ not only blesses our lives but it will impact those around us.

Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” The verses that precede this say, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9). We are saved by God’s grace for a purpose. It’s not just to bear fruit for our sake alone. We bear fruit to show that we are followers of Jesus that make a difference in this world -  “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples” (John 15:8)!

As we understand who we are and what we were made for, we are operating in the outflow of God’s love in our lives. Our prayers transform from being self-centered to being Jesus centered; as we “ask whatever we wish,” we can know in confidence it will be done in Jesus’ name.

Prayer Prompts
1. Do you feel like a dead branch? Are you living out the purposes that God prepared in advance for you to do? Ask God to reveal what missed opportunities are around you.
2. The enemy also wants to bring shame and regret into your life in these missed opportunities so that you do not take steps forward in living a fruitful life. Pray in your authority in Christ against what is not of God and embrace the redemption that Jesus brings. Ask Him what your next step is and in what ways you can take those steps.
3. If you know your purpose, listen to the Holy Spirit in guidance as you pray. What is the Spirit prompting in you?  Write them down and talk with a trusted friend to hear, understand, and obey what Jesus is saying to you.
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