The other day I was reading in the Gospel of John. For months now I have been walking through the Bible with my brother who is not a professing Believer. The story is pretty amazing of how the Lord has orchestrated this little Bible Study that I would not have thought possible several years ago. But, that particular story is for another day.
As I was doing my preliminary study for this weekly Bible Study I came across some teaching on the famous chapter of the vine in John 15.
The original language in verse 6 which is translated as takes away or thrown away also has another layer of meaning. The word there does mean what it is translated to be (thrown away), but what is lost in our translation is the additional layer of meaning which is to lift up.
“If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers;…”
I don’t know if you have spent the time to grow plants that are vines, but they have a tendency to grow into the dirt. Gravity pulls the vines into the dirt which then causes the vine to run along the ground. When the vine does this, it will not bear fruit or flowers or at least not much fruit.
Therefore, the meaning that is lost in our English translation that is obvious in the original language is the concept of the Father coming along as the vine dresser and picking up the vines that have fallen into the mud and dirt and picking them up and putting them back on the trellis so they will bear even more fruit. He does remove the dead vines that promote the growth of decay and disease in the overall plant. But, he also picks up vines out of the mud and puts them on the trellis.
This adds another layer of meaning to this parable. Sure, there is the same element that many of us have always recognized of the removal of dead vines and casting them in the fire. But, there are those families and individuals out there, and quite a lot of them, that get caught in the dirt, grime, and mud of the world. This is not necessarily sin. Sometimes it is just the weight of living and the Father comes along and lifts them up.
Whether it is worry or complaining or looking to the wrong friends, these families are just living in this world. They know the truth and they study their Bibles. As for knowledge, they are in pretty good shape, but they are stuck in the mud. Because of this, they don’t seem to bear much fruit, and many times, they might even appear to be just like those that aren’t even connected to the vine.
These families may even have the same problems as those with no hope in Christ. These individuals and families that are stuck in the mud might even remember a time in which they lived daily with the Lord but now they feel dry inside.
This is something we are all susceptible to. None of us are immune. We all have a tendency to fall into the mud and get mired in the dirt and grime. It’s the weight of living in this fallen world. We try to do the right thing, but sometimes we just can’t resist the pull to the ground.
The antidote to this is the Father. He pulls us up and puts us back on the trellis in which we can bear the fruit we are meant to yield from his Son, Jesus Christ.
More knowledge is not necessarily going to help. You need more of the Father–Abba Father.
This is how I have always looked at what we offer at Teach Them Diligently. The Lord over the years has used Teach Them Diligently to pull Fathers and Mothers out of the mud.
This is why there is the “a-ha” moment when families come to our events. They have been feeling down and heavy. They knew something was not right and things were degrading in their home. Then they come to one of our events and they find the answer. That is why we have so many testimonies from attendees. It is like this light comes on.
Maybe,–they have been reading books and guides on how to homeschool. Or, they follow influencers and listen to podcasts. But, then they come to our event, bump into a bunch of homeschool families just like them, and they have an epiphany.
“Homeschooling is not just about education.”
“My home is my Jerusalem.”
And, this is what they find at Teach Them Diligently.
We actually build the event with this in mind. Singing, the Speakers, Prayer before the sessions, the content and camaraderie. The fact that we pray for every family before they get to the event. And, we even donate a portion of every ticket to missions (Did you know that?).
Don’t misunderstand…do not think that we don’t have a lot of “how-to” homeschool stuff and curriculum. We do, but we couple it with depth. Depth that renews your family.
We have found that the world has changed. Homeschooling is no longer synonymous with being Christian. Just because an event or curriculum is focused on homeschooling does not mean that it is based in God the Father.