Friday April 16, 2021 – An essential component

John 15:5  “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

Picture a large sailboat, out at sea, with sails unfurled and moving gloriously with the wind.  (Hopefully imagining this doesn’t make you seasick!)  Wouldn’t it be wonderful to be on such a ship, on such a day, with a group of dear ones?  Wow – what a great time that would be!  Donna and I have been able to do this very thing a couple of times and the memories we have are ones we treasure.

But take a moment to think about all of the needed ‘ingredients’ in this adventure.  What must we have to make it happen?  First we’ve got to have a sizable body of water for sailing on.  Then we must have a sailboat big enough to handle the group of friends that are going on the adventure – and a crew to sail it.

We would like to have a beautiful day with a strong breeze.  How about doing the sailing amidst a group of islands with beautiful scenes to behold – and a group of dolphin accompanying us?  Of course we want to have something wonderful to eat, so why don’t we
make it a morning sail and we enjoy homemade coffee cake and coffee and orange
juice as we sail.  Can’t you just picture enjoying one another, the breeze, the sea spray, the beauty and the wonder of it all!?

In considering the necessary ‘ingredients’, does anything seem to be missing?  Not at first glance.  But there is something absolutely essential that is taken for granted in the above items.  Without this ‘essential’ the adventure doesn’t happen – except that we sit on the sailboat, wherever it is, and enjoy the scenery, the food, the breeze and one another – but we don’t go anywhere!

What is this essential – that is taken for granted to be there?  Answer: Sails.  And what is a sail?  A piece of material extended on a mast to catch the wind and propel a boat, ship, or
other vessel: “all the sails were unfurled”.

From God’s perspective, walking in His ways is as much as a given for Christians as sails are for a sailboat. Just as a sailboat won’t go anywhere without sails, Christians who don’t walk in His ways won’t ‘go anywhere’ either.  This is why we are more and more hearing the term Jesus Follower.  This is how we remain in Him!  This is how we bear righteous fruit!  Sailboats with sails = Christians who obey Scripture (Jesus Followers) = the adventure is on!!


About Don Schmidt

Beginning in the fall of 2009, Don was VP of Operations & Director of Student Life for 2 years at Williamson Christian College in Franklin, TN - a wonderful, accredited 4 year college for adult learners. That is where he started writing the devotionals. The passion of his heart is to love God and to help others learn to love God more and more. He grew up in St. Joseph, MI - Class of '66. Graduated from Michigan State in '70 and Wheaton Grad School in '78. Thunderous conversion October 11, 1968. He and Donna were engaged 2 hrs & 15 minutes after they met August 25, 1969 at a Christian camp in Georgia. They married in '70 and have 4 wonderful sons. Most of his adult career has been in business in NE Ohio. They lived for 20 years in Peninsula, OH. They attended St. Luke's Ministries (Anglican) in Copley, OH for many years. Six years ago they were reassigned by the Lord to attend River of Life Community Church in Hudson, OH. St. Luke's prayerfully sent them off on this new adventure with much love.
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