We have just one Sunday left before Stewardship dedication Sunday. Following the tree metaphor, this Sunday we will be talking about being the branches on Christ’s real vine.
Of course, this is drawing directly from John 15, where Christ says, “I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you’re joined with me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant. Separated, you can’t produce a thing.”
It seems so very appropriate to be using this passage on a communion Sunday, since this is often included in the communion liturgy. As we partake of communion, we are reminded that we are partaking of the body and blood of Christ, and indeed, we become the body of Christ. This keeps so nicely with the “real vine” imagery in so many ways!
It also comes as a strong reminder to us, amidst a stewardship season. When we partake of the Eucharist (in Greek literally “Thanksgiving” meal), we are committing ourselves to becoming Christ’s body in the world—to taking up our call to be Christ’s branches out in the world. In a very real way, we are committing to be as giving of ourselves, as Christ was of his own body for us. It means that just like our “real vine” we intend to be branches that produce the fruit of real life.
With all of these wonderful connections to communion, stewardship, thanksgiving, and real life, it seems that there could be no better scripture to reflect on this week. So how about you? How are you living out your call as a branch from Christ? What kind of fruit have you been producing? Are you ready to give of yourself in the same way that Christ gave of himself?