We meet as a staff to pray on Wednesdays, praying through the congregation’s prayer concerns and lifting your praises. It is beautiful to see the places where you all have sensed God’s presence throughout the week. Oftentimes, the beauty of creation is mentioned – whether working in one’s yard, going on a walk, or watching the birds.
As I prepare our little tomato seedlings to go into our garden beds, I think of the places where I too see God throughout creation. As I have occasionally moved the little seedling pots around the porch, trying to capture sunlight or avoid strong storm winds, I marvel at the way each of the plants quickly readjusts, growing toward the sunlight.
Whether zinnias or marigolds, tomatoes or squash, they grow, reaching in the direction of the sunlight. They grow, reaching toward their source of life. It makes me wonder, how do we continue to grow, reaching toward God who is our source of life?
Throughout Scripture it speaks of Israel as the vine and God as the sower. God tends to and provides life for the people of Israel. God prunes and replants the vine, promising to be faithful amidst it all. In John 15 Jesus says, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.” He then continues with the familiar verse naming that he is the vine and we are the branches. We are rooted in Christ and, from that rooting, God bears fruit through us.
As the summer brings a different pace to our everyday lives, I invite us to think about how we are growing, reaching toward God who is our source of life. How are we being rooted in the vine of Christ? How are we learning and growing, seeking to be branches through which God continues to bear fruit?