The Gospel of John includes many metaphors describing Jesus. One is of Jesus as the vine. From D. Moody Smith
- "The metaphor of the vine and branches represents the unity of Jesus and the disciples. The unity is a given, but it does not exist apart from the disciples’ own participation. Jesus is both the one who commands them to abide and bear fruit and the one who enables them to do so. Their bearing fruit is proof they are Jesus’ disciples. Jesus has linked discipleship with mutual love … The abiding and bearing of fruit of which Jesus speaks is the mutuality of love among the disciples."
Building the service around the scripture from John, Rev. Debbie directed our thinking toward how we are connected like Jesus' disciples were connected to him or like grapes to the vine. Tom Frank told his story of joining his wife, Joeli, in the Philippines years ago, only to discover that he was expected to preach the sermon on Sunday morning. His thoughts turned to his dad and the lessons his dad shared with him and, it was to his dad, that his sermon that morning was dedicated. You can hear his story on the attached youtube or read it on the file attachment above.