As the vine, Jesus is the sole source of nourishment. A branch has no existence apart from its attachment to the vine.
Nor does it have a purpose apart from the vine. Nobody grows grape vines merely of ornamental purposes. The purpose of a branch is to bear the fruit, but the work of the branch is simply to remain connected with the vine. The vine, in processing the nutrients of the sun, soil and water does all the work and supplies all that the branch needs to bear fruit.
The Father is the gardener who does the pruning and careful tending. The branch need never worry about the gardener’s neglect or the vine’s inability to sustain the branches.
The end result of such dependence will be the enjoyment of God’s love and the fullness of joy. This joy lacks nothing and is the same joy that Jesus experiences. This joy is completely independent of any circumstances, external or internal, for its source is the communion of love between the Father, Jesus and the individual; this love is sustained by obedience.
What meaning does the word abides have for you?
How does the image of branch and vine apply to your own relationship with Jesus?
What is the nourishment that the Christian receives from being attached to Christ?
What kind of fruit is God looking for from those who grow from the vine that is Jesus Christ?
In what sense have the disciples already been pruned?
What other ways do you think God prunes us?
What happens to those branches that are attached to the vine but do not bear fruit?
What would keep a branch from bearing fruit?