In Jesus’ last conversation with His disciples He said in John 15:5, “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.”
Abiding in Christ carries the core notion of connection and non-activity. A branch does no work except to receive from the vine the nutrients and pass them along. For Westerners one of our greatest failures as Christ followers is a lack of attentiveness to the vine. Our busy lives consume our energies, creativity, and time so there is little space to be with God. We make the mistake of equating God’s will with kingdom accomplishments rather than quiet attentiveness. Finding ways to be still allows for the Spirit to work naturally in our souls without expectation of gain. Sometimes a dry well is an invitation to simply sit quietly with God.
Father, when my well seems dry for a season, I long for Your rain to come! When my life is running on empty from the busyness of striving to serve You, slow me down and draw me near to Your heart. I want to be like Mary, sitting at Your feet…just listening to Your voice and soaking in Your words. I long to be like John, resting my head against Your chest, simply listening to Your heart beat. Send Your rain to refresh my weary spirit on days when, as Your branch, I struggle to abide in You. I don’t need any divine revelation today, Lord…I just need You.
–Adapted from Giving Ourselves to Prayer: An Acts 6:4 Primer for Ministry (Chapter 35, The Problem of Prayerlessness by Mary Kate Morse). This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
Praise God as the one who protects you from life’s roaring waterfalls and waves (Ps. 42:7). Give thanks that even in the stormy times of life God is always near. Confess those times when you’ve questioned God’s presence or doubted his protection. Commit yourself to staying by his side no matter what comes your way. Ask God to lead and guide you through the stormy as well as the calm seasons of life.
Thank God for the work and witness of missionaries around the world. Pray that they will go on the wings of a praying church back home. Intercede especially for world missionaries supported by your church.
–Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend.