Dear Watermark Church family,
“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” John 15:4,5
Our relationship to Christ is unlike anything else in the human realm. It can be described only by comparing it to relationships we are familiar with. It is like a deep friendship. It is like two people in love with each other, or like the love and respect shared by a parent and child.
Scripture uses a number of metaphors to describe our relationship to Christ. He is the King and we are the subjects; He is the Shepherd and we are the sheep; He is the Head and we are the body. One of the best metaphors is the one Christ Himself used in John 15, where He is the Vine and we are the branches.
Jesus says in verse 9, "Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love." A real disciple doesn't come to Christ, receive His love, and then leave again; he remains. That is what Jesus is saying, whether He says "abide," bear much fruit," or "abide in My love." They all mean, "Be a real believer."
To be a true Christ follower means that there will be evidence of the presence and power of Jesus in your life! If a person's relationship to Christ is genuine, he remains.
If you continue in the faith, you are showing that your connection to Christ is real; if you walk away from Christ, you demonstrate that it never was.
As Christians, we are not expected by God to muster the power to change from within ourselves, or to try to live like Christ by our own efforts. We are to remain connected to the Savior, which means to “abide in Him.” He will give us the desire and ability to do His will and will empower us to develop Christ-like character as we abide in Him. However, “apart from Him, you can do nothing!”
If it is true that we cannot do anything apart from Him, then it is vital that we learn to abide. Abiding begins with salvation, or believing that Jesus died and rose to forgive our sins. We then allow Him to have first place in our lives. To abide in Christ also means knowing God’s Word and then obeying it each day.
This Sunday, join us as we look at how to develop the habit of spending time alone with God on a regular basis, to help us cultivate a vibrant relationship with Him, and remain faithful to God, abiding in Christ for our lifetime.
As Rick and Cathy Shook enter their retirement, and begin their cross-country journey in their RV on July 1, we celebrate their commitment to the Lord and to our church over many years. Their servant leadership has encouraged and built-up the faith of others in so many ways. Their tireless commitment to our church clothing ministry has blessed hundreds of local families. As friends and fellow soldiers in the gospel, they are loved greatly. Be sure to give them a hug this Sunday and let them know they will be missed! I know they will take the light of Christ with them wherever their travels take them!
Youth Group Schedule –
Saturday, June 3 - Youth Group End of Year Cookout – 6:30 PM at the Hruby’s home.
Vacation Bible School has been changed to the week of June 25-29. Many children’s lives are influenced for eternity during this special VBS week at Watermark Church. Let Tim and Patti Kellis know if you are available to help that week.
Sunday School: Women’s Bible Study Group – Claudia Shrive is leading an encouraging women’s adult Sunday School Class each week at 9:30AM at the church facility. Join the ladies for fellowship and great discussion on various in-depth topics from God’s Word.
The Prophecy and World Events class is offered at 9:30 AM Sundays, taught by Pastor Ron.
Life Group: The Gibson’s and Settimos’ Life Group Bible study meets every other Friday. Contact Paul Settimo or Nathan Gibson for more info.
We have now added a Grade 4-6 Children’s Sunday School class at 9:30am on Sundays. Classes are currently being offered as follows:
9:30 AM Pre-school - grade 3 Patti Kellis
9:30 AM Grades 4-6 Tim Kellis
Please pray for Diane Crowder, who is experiencing symptoms related to a weakened heart.
Please pray for Anna Gabbard’s father Eugene, who is also having health issues.
Together abiding in the Vine,