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I have been very moved lately with the promise in John 15:7,8. I started to write a blog post on praying for fruitfulness. Then I discovered that about a year ago I wrote a blog post on this but never posted it. So I am offering it to you today.

Modern Americans often have the strangest notion of prayer. Much prayer in these days is an extension of our materialist convictions. You can hear preaching, here and in many countries around the world, that poses provision as the primary purpose of prayer. This is often taken to the extremes. "God give me a Cadillac." "God let me win the lottery."

But according to Jesus, the primary purpose of prayer is fruitfulness. In John 15:7 Jesus gave us a wonderful promise of prayer. He said, "If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish and it will be done for you.”

Jesus continued in verse 8, "This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples." The purpose of prayer is fruitfulness. Today I read day 10 in the little booklet, 40 Days of Prayer, on the fruit of the Spirit. It reminded me that bearing fruit begins with my character and continues in the significance of my life. God is planting His seeds in my life to touch others and impact the world.

The provision of the Father is a foundational assumption of prayer. You don't need to spend much time praying for provisions. Your Father knows what you need before you ask. But fulfillment and joy do not come from worldly possessions, luxury, pleasure, or success.

Jesus continues in John 15:11, "I have told you this that my joy may be in you and your joy may be full.” Joy comes from purpose and usefulness. Are you praying for fruitfulness? Or are you praying junk?


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Comment by Malva Birch on August 29, 2017 at 9:27am

John 3:30

NIV He must become greater; I must become less.

BSB He must increase; I must decrease.

NET He must become more important while I become less important.

Comment by Andrew R. Wheeler on August 29, 2017 at 8:01am

How wonderful the balance in this passage is!  Not only is fruitfulness the purpose of prayer, but it's also the outgrowth of prayer.  Not only should much of our prayer center around fruitfulness for the kingdom (as opposed to being fixated on our own wants), but also we don't have to try to bear fruit on our own!  Prayer is the means of fruitfulness!

I love the picture of the vine bearing fruit.  The branches don't strain and strive to produce blossoms, then fruit.  It just naturally happens from being connected to the vine.  Similarly, when we are connected with our Vine (through prayer), bearing fruit happens naturally.

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