A New Year is upon us. It seems almost surreal that we have begun another decade. With it, we carry both hopes and fears for ourselves, our families, and our community.
There are undoubtedly feelings of excitement, apprehension, and possibly uneasiness if we look at the world around us. Within the first few days of January, fires are burning out of control in Australia and the Middle East is in crisis. In our own community, some families are dealing with both the pain of losing a loved one, while others experience the exuberance of welcoming a new life.
As Christians, how do we respond and what posture can we take? Over the Christmas break, I was reminded of John 15: 1-11, where Jesus speaks of Himself as the vine and the Father as the vinedresser. In verse 4, Jesus provides the answer, “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.”
What does it mean to abide? According to some dictionary definitions, it means to “remain fixed or stable”. An older English definition includes the concept of “living in” or “dwelling”. If we are dwelling in Christ and finding our energy and strength in Him, then we will be able to flourish regardless of the “weather” that is around is. Regardless of how we are feeling, we are called to remain fixed to our source, where we will be pruned by the vinedresser to bear fruit.
Too often it is easy to approach situations in our own power, rather than simply abiding. Part of the abiding process is also finding rest and be replenished by Christ through His Word and through prayer. My hope for myself and each of you is that you will find your strength each day this year in Christ and produce much fruit for His glory. Have a very blessed New Year!
J-D Lussier, Principal