Are you attached to the trunk?

Are you attached to the trunk?

Many years ago, Pope John XXIII did a strange thing in the early days of his papacy. He had many admirable virtues.  Humility was one of those fruits he bore because he was in deep communion with God always, totally attached to Him.

Knowing the burden prisoners were carrying, one of the first things he did as Pope was to visit Rome’s central prison where he told the prisoners, “You could not have come to me, so I have come to you,”. It was a moment of solace for those prisoners.

He informed them of his cousin who once served in prison.  In good faith, the Vatican newspaper avoided printing his remarks for fear of people misreading him.  But the world knew of his humility.

Jesus was humility personified.  He said, “Learn from me for I am gentle and humble in spirit” (Mathew 11:29). He invited people “take my yoke upon you for it is easy.” (Mathew 11:28-30).

During the times of Jesus, carpenters tailor-made the yoke to fit the neck of oxen comfortably, so that while ploughing it will not be painful for the animals.

An ancient story says that Jesus made yokes in the carpenters’ shop of Nazareth so perfectly that it fit the oxen much better than any other carpenters’ shop in Galilee.  Jesus a carpenter, knew firsthand what he was talking about when he used the words “My yoke is easy” (Mathew 11:28-30).

In other words, Jesus meant “Trust me and yoke yourselves to me, together we can pull any load”.

All of us have so many loads to carry in life; family problems, work-related problems, health problems, financial problems, relationship problems, loneliness. Some are disoriented in life and confused about the future.

But God so comfortingly tells us that He will carry those loads together with us if we humble ourselves and share it with Him. On our own, we can do nothing.

Jesus says He is the vine and we are the branches.  When we detach or distance ourselves from Him, we can do nothing. We often depend on our own strength but usually achieve nothing.

In the words of Jesus, "Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For, apart from me, you can do nothing”(John 15:5).

God is the trunk and we are the branches. We draw our strength from Him each day.  When we choose to live apart from Him, relying on our own talents and strengths, we will wither off.

Remember, you and I are the branches.  God is the trunk. Are you attached to the trunk?

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