Almost every woman likes to receive a bouquet of cut flowers. After admiring and smelling them, she wastes no time getting them into water. Even though fresh and beautiful when she gets them, their days are numbered. Because they’ve been severed from their life-source, they will soon wither and die. One day she will have to throw them away.

Author Lloyd Ogilvie sees in this a picture of the Christian whose spiritual vitality has faded and shriveled. Such a person has become a “cut-flower Christian.” This is similar to the illustration Jesus used in describing the vine and the branches. Just as a branch can’t bear fruit by itself, He explained, we can’t bear spiritual fruit unless we abide in Him, the true vine (Jn. 15:4).

If a branch could speak, it wouldn’t apologize for its need to depend on the vine for bearing fruit. It would say instead, “For this I was made!” Jesus likewise knew we were made for dependence on Him, our life-source—no apology needed! In fact, such dependence is the only way to avoid becoming a “cut-flower Christian.”

Let’s embrace His declaration, “Without Me you can do nothing.” He is really saying, “With Me you can do everything I appoint for you, including bearing much fruit!”