The Lord talked with His disciples about how we can be “fruitful” branches of the vine. Sometimes the Lord compared people to trees, but this time He was talking about a vine and its branches.
To illustrate the story, you may wish to print a picture of a grapevine or find an actual vine to show—preferably one that is fruitful and not poisonous. Depending on when you cut it, it may start to wither and dry out—which shows what happens when a branch is no longer connected to the vine!
Read aloud John 15:4-12.
Ideas for discussion
- What do the words “Abide in Me, and I in you” mean? How can we abide in the Lord? (Literally, this means to reside or remain in the Lord.)
- How does abiding in the Lord make it possible for us to bear fruit?
- What is the opposite of abiding in the Lord?
- How many times are the phrases “abide in Me” or “abide in My love” repeated in John 15:4-12?
- How does a person “abide” in the Lord’s love?
Read more about the Lord as the Vine
- “The Vine and the Branches” by Daniel W. Goodenough
Our faith in the Lord—combined with a life of love—produces good works like fruit from branches. Good works that are done from ourselves (with no acknowledgment that the Lord is the source of all that is good and true) are not intrinsically good, even if they benefit other people.
- “You Are the Branches” by Jeremy Simons
It is important for people to be connected to each other and even more important to be connected to the Lord.
Projects and activities for all ages
- I Am the Vine Poster
Download and print this beautiful poster with words from John 15: 4-5.
- Being a Branch of the Lord’s Vine
How can we become a more fruitful branch of the Lord’s Vine? One way is to realize that we need the Lord’s help to do what is good and think what is true.
- You Are the Vine Song Video composed by Lori S. Odhner
A beautiful song about the Lord as the Vine.
- Compare the Bramble with a Fruitful Vine (ages 4-10)
Go on a nature walk to see a prickly vine and compare it with a vine (such as a grape vine) that is without thorns and bears edible fruit.
- Fruit of the Vine (ages 4-10)
Talk about grapes and other fruit that grows on a vine. Consider making "a grape vine" of good deeds with "grape" beads to put on a green cord.
- I Am the Vine
Picture yourself as a branch of the vine. Then think about the useful things you do to help other people.
- Prayers for Adults: I Am the Vine
Two beautiful prayers about serving the Lord and the neighbor.
“As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine,
neither can you, unless you abide in Me” (John 15:4).
If we do not abide in the Lord, then we are looking to ourselves as the source of good and truth and serving others only as a means of serving self. To abide in the Lord—to let the Lord draw near us—we need to look to Him, obey His commandments, serve Him by serving others, and acknowledge that He is the only source of all that is good and true.
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