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Concentrated Juice

When I was younger, I had a fondness for orange juice. Standing in the chilled section of the supermarket, I’d gaze intently at the array of choices available: “100% Juice”, “Peel Fresh”, “Pure Juice”, “Freshly Squeezed”, “Premium”, “No Sugar Added Juice”, “Natural Juice”, “Smooth Orange Juice”, and more. Each bottle promised a certain level of quality and purity, and my decision often hinged on my budget as well as the willingness to spend.

One particular brand caught my eye with its claim of being a “Natural Home-Squeezed Concentrate.” Excitedly, after months of pondering, I finally made the purchase, only to be disappointed when the taste did not live up to its lofty claims. The glaring gap between the promised “Natural Home-Squeezed Concentrate” and its reality left me feeling let down.

Reflecting on this experience, I realised that it is parallel to our relationship with God. Just as I had scrutinised labels to authenticate the juice, we must live out our spiritual lives with authenticity and integrity. Are we genuinely seeking a deep connection with the divine or are we content with surface-level appearances?

John 15:5-8 reinforces this: “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

God promises us that if we remain in Him, we are akin to a tap that is connected to the source of the juice that comes from the true vine. When we turn on our tap, what flows forth is the pure essence of Jesus Christ – peeled, freshly squeezed, 100% concentrated, natural juice – that satisfies our soul and spirit. Anyone who encounters us would enjoy the genuine presence of Jesus Christ within us. Just imagine having an endless supply of “freshly peeled concentrated juice”, never running dry or losing its refreshing taste. What a delightful and satisfying experience coupled with the urge to want more.

We cannot expect to attract others to Christ if we are either devoid of “juice,” withering and unfruitful, or if our “orange juice” is diluted, tainted with unhealthy additives. We would undoubtedly disappoint both ourselves and others by living such a lacklustre life.

We must continuously connect our “tap” to God throughout the day, allowing His power to flow through us. Merely settling for a nominal Christian existence will not satisfy the deep hunger of our souls or make any meaningful impact on those around us.

As we heed Jesus’ call to remain in Him and bear much fruit, let us strive to always be connected to the source, firmly rooted in His presence and steadfast in our faith. May our lives overflow with His goodness, so that others may witness our deeds and give praise to our Father in heaven.

Onward “Concentrated Christian”!

By Assistant Pastor Serin Chng