“I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.”John 15:5
We recently took a spring break trip to Dallas, Texas. Because this was the last spring break our son will have in high school, we allowed him to pick the location. He wanted to go to a big city with limited restrictions, so we figured Texas would be our best bet. We planned ahead and looked for things we could do and enjoy in Dallas. I remembered the time my dad took me to AT&T Stadium, the home of the Dallas Cowboys, and I thought it would be great to take Nate there as well.
I bought tickets for the VIP stadium tour and was excited for my son to see the stadium of our favorite team, and excited to share with him what I shared with my own dad. When we arrived, our tour guide started to point out interesting facts about the stadium. We went up to the suites and sat in seats we could never afford, we went down to the field which was currently covered in dirt, and we went behind the scenes in the team locker room. We were given many facts about the stadium, but there was one fact in particular that stood out to me more than anything else.
Our guide pointed to two large arches at the very top of the stadium, and she informed us that these two arches held up the entire stadium. I was amazed by that fact as the stadium is able to hold 100,000 fans at any given time, which subsequently places great importance on these arches. The arches span 292 feet above the ground, 70 feet into the ground and another 120 feet across underground. Many attendees look at the vast video board, the exciting football being played, and the beauty of stadium. The arches are often overlooked in the excitement of the other attractions, but the stadium could not exist with its supporting structure. If you take out the arches, the stadium would collapse on itself and be totally useless and worthless.
As Christians, we sometimes try and do things in our own power and strength. We get too big for our britches and attempt to do the work of the Lord without the help of the Lord. We grow cocky and think we are the ones producing the spiritual fruit, forgetting that we can do nothing without Him. We forget that our own righteousness is as filthy rags as Isaiah 64:6 states, “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.” If we are not attached to the vine, Jesus, then there is nothing we can do. All that we are or hope to be is dependent on Him.
Where are you today Christian? Are you attempting to do things in your own power and strength? Have you grown confident in what you think you can do instead of depending on the One who is the supplier and sustainer of all things? Are you trying to produce fruit apart from the vine? Have you come to realize that you can do nothing without Him? Will you abide in Him and allow Him to bring forth much fruit in your life? He is the arch that we are dependent on, and we must always remember that without Him, we can do nothing.