Show Yourselves To Be

One of my favorite Steven Curtis Chapman songs, “Show Yourselves To Be“, is based on this week’s devotion text, John 15. This time around, what caught my attention was where it says “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples” from which the song gets its title. The New English Translation says “My Father is honored by this…” This tells me that bearing fruit is what honors God. Bearing fruit is what demonstrates that I am a Christ follower.

“…the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control” — Galatians 5:22-23

Show Yourselves To Be
by Steven Curtis Chapman
 

Sweet are the branches
Growing the fruit that comes from the vine
But these are just branches
Blown by the wind holding on to life
I want to be like them
Holding to the One whose life is mine
And I know as I follow him
His life will surely show in me

He said you will
Show yourselves to be
The ones who follow Me
By the evidence you leave along the way
They will know that you are mine 
Like the branches on the vine
If you show yourselves to be following Me

Faith joins our hearts to Him
It’s not a result of anything we do
But if we are part of Him
There will be reasons to believe it’s true
The fruit cannot help but grow
If the branch is joined into the tree
And love cannot help but show
In the one who goes where Jesus leads

Planted in the fertile soil of quiet times
Watered by the rains of trouble
Growing toward the sun that shines

They will know that you are Mine
Like the branches on the vine
If you show yourselves to be following Me
So show yourselves to be following Me

That means it’s about my character. When I overcome my sinful nature — pettiness, a short temper, being easily discouraged and being discouraging, being harsh and unreasonable, among many, many other things — with the fruit of the spirit by surrendering my life and its parts to the lordship of Christ, that’s bearing fruit.

That honors God and shows that I follow Christ. Not singing the songs, not attending church events, not even evangelism and ministering to other people, leading people to Christ or teaching them the Bible. It’s being connected to the true vine and bearing fruit, changing my character and becoming like Christ. That’s harder, and I can’t just force my way to bear fruit like I can doing the things that I do. Instead it comes through being rooted in the word and prayer, and allowing my interaction with God to saturate the rest of my day in my decisions, actions and thought-life.

This is the song I chose for the Berkeley worship team to sing at the Gracepoint Fellowship Church – Austin farewell, a prayer for them, and a commitment for us who remain here to do the same.  And we will be connected with them as long as we all remain connected to the true Vine, remaining in Him, obeying his commands, and loving one another, demonstrating to the onlooking world that we are His.

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