An occasional series of random musings from the Lectionary.
Jesus said to his disciples, "As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide in his love. I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete. "This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I do not call you servants any longer, because the servant does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father. You did not choose me but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name. I am giving you these commands so that you may love one another. - John 15: 9-17
You are loved by God. Love deeply. Bear lasting fruit.
This passage almost seems over the top in its reminders to love one another. It's almost as if Jesus knows what a hard time we are going to have remembering we are loved and to love one another.
We are loved to bear fruit, lasting fruit.
Most fruit I buy does not last. My freezer is full of brown bananas that I plan to one day make into banana bread. My kitchen counter invariably has the over ripe apple, the extra soft avocado and the petrified lime. Fruit needs to be transformed for it to last. Preserved in jams, or dehydrated. The plant may have finished its task of growing the fruit, but for the fruit to last it must be changed in a way that the plant cannot do. That thought gives me some hope for the times when I feel like I am being crushed, or having the life sucked out of me. Those experiences, while painful, could be the very thing I need for the fruit of my life to be preserved.
One other thought -
Do not chastise the cherry tree for not bearing apples.