Preston Party of Six

Preston Party of Six

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Staying Connected

What do our bodies, a cell phone, and a minivan all have in common? 

They all need to stay connected to the right power source in order to work properly.

Our bodies require healthy food to grow, develop, and function properly.

Cell phones require a strong battery and a connection port that works properly in order to function correctly.

Minivans need a strong battery, alternator, gasoline and a slew of other things to work effectively.
Well, last week, it’s as if God slapped me across the face when all three of these things came to a screeching halt in my life.

One particular morning after a run, I felt really dizzy and realized I hadn’t eaten enough prior to my run.  My body was telling me that it needed good nutrition in order to work properly.
Then my cell phone quit working multiple times week because the connection port wasn’t functioning properly. Result?  No power source…the battery was completely dead.  It needed a totally new power source.

Finally, after working out at the gym one morning, I discovered that my minivan wouldn’t start.  Thankfully someone was able to use jumper cables to get the battery cranked so that I could get to an auto parts store where they assessed the battery.  Result?  Good battery…one of the kids must have left a light on or something.  But then a few hours later, while in carpool line at the kids’ school, the battery died again.  This time I started to panic because it got VERY hot, VERY quickly in the van and Jenna was starting to get VERY overheated.  I was able to pull over to the side of the road where someone with jumper cables tried to charge the battery again.  Result?  It worked…but only for a few seconds.   Thankfully we got a ride home and left my van to sit on the side of the road for about 18 hours until a tow-truck came to the rescue.  It was obvious that my minivan wasn’t connected to a strong power source, either. 
Then God spoke.
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” ~John 15:5

A lightbulb the size of Texas went off in my brain. 

Apart from healthy food, my body cannot work properly.

Apart from a functioning connection port, my cell phone battery cannot work properly.

Apart from a functioning battery and alternator, my minivan cannot work properly.
Apart from Jesus, I. CAN. DO. NOTHING.

This is one of those verses I’ve read a million times and although I believe it, for some reason last week it penetrated my heart even more.  It’s easy for me to “go through the motions” of life, not take time to “stop and smell the roses," or multi-task instead of looking my child in the eye.  I don’t like these things about myself and they are things I constantly battle. 

Yet last week I realized fresh and anew that I MUST stay connected to the One True Power Source in order to do anything…
Apart from Jesus, there is no purpose in life.

Apart from Jesus, there is no joy in life.

Apart from Jesus, there is no peace in life.

Does staying connected to Jesus make life easy?  ABSOLUTELY NOT!  In fact, Jesus promised His followers that they would experience problems (John 16:33b)…and dare I say that a dead cell phone and a dead car battery are very minor problems!  But then Jesus makes an even greater promise.  He says “But take heart!  I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33c). 

Staying connected to the One True Power Source may be simple but it’s not easy.  There is no formula to follow with three easy steps.  But being more intentional about what truly matters is certainly part of this process.  And disconnecting from some of the distractions of this world is also part of the solution.  Thankfully, God provides us with an example to follow and that is Jesus Christ.   In John 17:4, Jesus says to His Father, "I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do."

Unless I stay connected to Christ, there is no way I'll be able to say those same words at the end of my life. 

So yes, I’m  very thankful that God used a dizzy spell, a dead cell phone, and a dead minivan battery last week to get my attention and remind me once again how important it is to follow Him with all my heart, to stay connected to Him and fellow believers, and to produce “fruit” that matters for eternity.