Fruit is actually a plant’s excess. It is the overflow of the life that a plant has taken into itself. The more life that a plant takes into itself, the more fruit it produces. Branches don’t have to force themselves to blossom; rather, because they are fed from the vine, they cannot help it. Branches simply need to be in the right place and reap the benefits of the gardener’s care.
For the people of God, the right place is connected to the vine, which is Christ the Lord. All who believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that he gave his life for the sake of sinners, and that through him God extends mercy and grace are branches of the vine. Those who believe his Word, pray and read Holy Scripture remain connected to the vine.
Branches are expected to bear fruit. Connected to the vine, we cannot help but to do so. As stated earlier, fruit is the overflow of the life that goes into a plant. As we branches of the vine of Christ learn from our teacher and follow his example, the abundant life given through Christ produces a harvest of fruit for the kingdom.
Within our midst, God has planted his vine called the Christ. Through our Baptism, he has claimed us and grafted us onto his vine. All we need to grow is provided by God, the vinedresser. Through Holy Scripture and prayer, worship and the sacraments, God feeds his people and we receive light and life. Remaining connected to the vine we cannot help but produce fruit. It is the overflow of the life that is within us, the light and life of Christ our Lord.
Lord Jesus Christ, fill us with your light and life that we may bear fruit for your kingdom. Amen.