Thursday, 12 November 2015

Insights from the Parable of the Vine

This morning we had a reflection and sharing on the parable of the vine from the gospel of John.
In the whole episode, something which is evident is that all along the vine is in touch with the garden and the gardener. Whether the branch is yielding or not; whether dead (burnt in the garden) or alive (with the vine). The gardener is also in touch with the vine... pruning, cutting, watering, manuring. Good lesson for all: Everyone is good and in the care of the Father... depending on our response to the care of the Father, is the treatment of the Son (pruning, cutting, harvesting...)

Abide in me... 
It is a natural human temptation – and an increasingly growing tendency among religious – to 'launch out', jump to action, engage oneself in activities. Because these are visible and tangible. These bring glory and name, among people and in the society. However the invitation is to 'abide in me'. Now that's difficult and a very risky affair. Risky because it involves a gruelling transformation. No escape. No dodging. No shortcuts. It turns you inside out and not at all comforting! Human as we are, we easily give in to the temptation rather than strive for transformation.

(In the light of the Chapter, a small distraction: We have ample opportunities to make this inner shift and we do go through them all – in fact, insist on fulfilling them all at the individual level, community level, province level. However without the real will)

Those branches which yield he prunes with care 
It is the tree which bears fruits that gets stoned. A sign of suffering and difficulty is that one is doing something worthwhile and different. If one were not to do anything, nothing is going to happen.

He cuts those branches which do not yield...
It is not enough just to be with Him but one needs to be productive too. Productivity is not necessarily an automatic outcome of being with the vine.

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