Before I left, a fellow missionary friend of mine, Kierra HIggens, commended to me John 15. She quoted it in one of our walking times together and the Holy Spirit quickened it to my heart. I haven't been able to get away from it since.
Yesterday morning I was reading the word (John 15) and I had a life-changing insight. Jesus says in verse 7, "If you remain in me and my WORDS remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given to you. This is to my Father's glory that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples."
I understand "remaining" to mean being present with the Lord at all times. Something I am focusing on doing today. The next part of the verse says, "My WORDS remain in you." I have always thought this meant reading and memorizing scripture. But yesterday I was prompted to look up the greek word used in this verse for "Word". My Dad taught me long ago that there are two greek words used to translate "Word". One is Logos, meaning the written word of God. The other is Rhema, meaning the living spoken word of God specific to us or a group.
The greek in this verse actually says "Rhema". So the scripture is saying, "If my living spoken word remains in you..." Wow! What a promise. The Lord has already been showing me the power of listening to His voice. This verse takes it even further. The promise here is that if we are present with the Lord in all moments, and keep the words that the Lord has spoken to us personally in our hearts (that means we have to seek after hearing HIS voice), then we can ask for the desires of our hearts and they will be given (I am sure that our hearts will line up with HIS and we will ask things that are also in the heart of the FATHER when we are listening to HIS voice).
I find verse 8 interesting as well. By keeping the living words of Jesus that He is speaking to us in our hearts we bring Glory to the Father. The purpose of these words is that we BEAR FRUIT. So these are not just words of encouragement but they are words that we speak out in order to DRAW PEOPLE INTO THE KINGDOM. In that, I prove myself to be a disciple of Christ.
These are piercing words. I PROVE myself a disciple by bearing fruit. This shouldn't make us feel guilty if we are not bearing fruit, but it SHOULD motivate us to seek out the Lord so that we DO bear fruit. After all, this is a promise, "If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear MUCH fruit" John 15:5
So if you find yourself in a place where you are not bearing fruit, this is my encouragement to you: focus on hearing the Rhema word of God on a daily basis. What is He saying to you today? And then obey. It is only a matter of time before you WILL bear fruit.