I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinegrower…. Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing…. If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask for whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit and become my disciples. (John 15:1-8, NRSV)
I was excited when I was assigned to write on this passage that summer. This, I suspected, was Jesus’ most focused teaching on how to maximize productivity. As an “achievement junkie,” I was eager to unearth Jesus’ greatest secrets for productivity in ministry.
I read through the passage one, twice, and leaned back stunned. Jesus words shattered my whole approach to ministry.