Something really caught my attention in may pastor’s homily this past weekend. He started off by talking about the storm that recently came through the area. He mentioned how amazing it was how many branches there were on the ground and immediately compared them with the branches our Blessed Lord mentions in the gospel. Here’s the scripture (John 15:1-8):
Jesus said to his disciples:
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower.
He takes away every branch in me that does not bear fruit,
and every one that does he prunes so that it bears more fruit.
You are already pruned because of the word that I spoke to you.
Remain in me, as I remain in you.
Just as a branch cannot bear fruit on its own
unless it remains on the vine,
so neither can you unless you remain in me.
I am the vine, you are the branches.
Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit,
because without me you can do nothing.
Anyone who does not remain in me
will be thrown out like a branch and wither;
people will gather them and throw them into a fire
and they will be burned.
If you remain in me and my words remain in you,
ask for whatever you want and it will be done for you.
By this is my Father glorified,
that you bear much fruit and become my disciples.”
His comparison got me to thinking. We often think that when God touches us in our lives, it is a “touchy feely” comfortable experience. But often times when He gives us a helping of His grace, it’s like we’re branches and there’s a storm trying to shake us loose from the tree. Our own concupiscent natures make us want to resist this infusion of grace. That’s because that change goes against that nature, our nature. Such a change is not something that comes easy. It’s a hard thing to go through, but it’s also a process that takes time. We have to work on it constantly and never let our guard down. One slip and we could undo untold amounts of time hanging on.
We have to weather the storm, no matter how hard it is to hang on.