When Jesus said, ‘I chose you and appointed you that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last,’ He was saying, ‘Spend your life in pursuit of that which has lasting significance and eternal value!’ What does He mean by ‘fruit’? ‘The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.’ (Galatians 5:22–23 NIV) Those nine qualities describe the only life that’s truly worth living.
Fortunately, you’re not left to produce this kind of fruit by self-effort. Indeed, you may as well try to pick yourself up by your own bootstraps! No, Jesus said this: ‘I am the True Vine, and My Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in Me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit He prunes so that it will be even more fruitful… No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the Vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Me. I am the Vine; you are the branches. If you remain in Me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from Me you can do nothing.’ (John 15:1–5 NIV)
Who is Jesus speaking to? Believers. ‘Every branch in Me.’ (John 15:2 NIV) Who is the gardener? ‘My Father is the gardener.’ (John 15:1 NIV) What’s His goal? For you to be ‘even more fruitful.’ (John 15:2 NIV) What’s the secret of fruitfulness? Constant contact and intimacy with Jesus. ‘If you remain in Me and I in you, you will bear much fruit.’ (John 15:5 NIV) So, if you want to be more fruitful, draw closer to the Lord.