DayBreaks for 2/15/19 – I AM #4: The True Vine

Image result for vines with grapes

DayBreaks for 2/15/2019: I AM #4: The True Vine

John 15:1 (ESV) – I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.

I spent a good many years living in northern California’s wine country and I got to see the vines as they changed with the seasons and passing years. There is a great deal of labor involved in keeping a vineyard.

Israel was often referred to as the vine in the Old Testament, but it was always in the context of degradation – from something that was luxurious and delightful passing into something fruitless, dying or dead. Isaiah and Jeremiah both say it has gone “wild” and is degenerate, no longer fulfilling the purpose for which she was chosen.

It is interesting that Jesus claims he is the “true” vine. He is the vine that will always bear fruit, that will not wither or fail due to heat, cold or any other factor.

As he explains elsewhere in the context, he promises that those branches that stay connected to the vine will bear fruit. And here’s the good news: in the vine, it isn’t the branches that create the nutrition that result in luscious, juicy grapes. Rather, the sap that creates the fruit is itself created in the vine and all the branches do is carry that sap out produce the fruit. How can Jesus guarantee that we will bear fruit? It’s not us at work, it’s Jesus at work to do that. All we need to do is stay/abide in the vine, let the vinedresser (God) prune us according to our need, and Jesus will see to it that we bear the fruit that the world needs and which glorifies the Father!

What fruit are you bearing?

PRAYER: Thank you, Jesus, for your pruning of us and giving us the privilege of bearing fruit for you! In your name, Amen.

Copyright by 2019 by Galen C. Dalrymple.  ><}}}”>

DayBreaks for 4/11/17 – A Fruitless Tree

DayBreaks for 4/11/17: A Fruitless Tree

From the Holy Week devotional guide from our church:

“Jesus was hungry…He might have been hungry…you know; so hungry it makes you angry. He was fully God, but He was also fully man so, my guess is He was hungry.

“Jesus saw the beautiful green leaves of a fig tree in the distance and He anticipated eating its fruit. He knew that if a fig tree had leaves it should have fruit, but as he searched the tree he found nothing. No fruit at all. To say Jesus was disappointed might be an understatement. If every a fig tree could be hypocritical, it was this one. Jesus hated hypocrisy. So much so that this fig tree became an object lesson to His disciples. So, what did He do? He cursed the fig tree! Interestingly enough, it died from the roots up. Its source of life had been removed.

“That same day, Jesus headed down to the temple and what did find? More hypocrisy! To the casual observer, everything “appeared” to be okay. But Jesus is no casual observer. He saw a lot of ‘leaves,’ but upon closer inspection Jesus discovered cheating, dishonesty and betrayal in the temple of all places. This was a place people came to meet with God, so finding hypocrisy in His Father’s house was more than the Prince of Peace could bear.

“You see, Israel was like that fig tree. It followed every ‘religious’ rule, but there was no fruit. What appeared to be flourishing with life was an illusion. In reality, Israel was spiritually dead.

“What about Judas Iscariot? Like Israel, he too resembled the fig tree. He had plenty of “leaves”. He walked with Christ, and along with the other disciples, he preached and cast out demons in Jesus’ name. He distributed the multiplied loaves and fishes. He saw eyesight restored to the blind and hearing restored to the deaf. But clearly he didn’t KNOW Christ. He had not tasted the goodness of God. He was going through the motions with no genuine fruit.

I wonder, are there areas in our lives that are beautiful with lush greenery, but upon closer inspection one would find no real fruit? Are we producing the kind of fruit Galatians 5:22-23 speaks of, But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law’?

“As we enter this Holy Week, we should ask ourselves, ‘After weekly church service, discipleship group and connect group, underneath it all, am I like Israel and Judas? Are there areas where I have only an ‘appearance’ of life? As others examine my life, what kind of fruit do they find?’

“Take time to confess these things and receive the fruits of love, faithfulness and peace from our gracious Savior. This world is filled with hungry people. Let them find in you, life-giving fruit that leads them to Jesus Christ.” – Michelle Swift, vocal director, Perimeter church

PRAYER: Lord, search us and show us the areas where there is an appearance of life, but no fruit. Fill us with your Spirit. May we be like trees planted by the streams of water, bearing fruit in season. In Jesus’ name, Amen. 

Copyright 2017 by Galen Dalrymple.

DayBreaks for 7/10/14 – You Never Know

DayBreaks for 7/10/14 – You Will Never Know

Mark 4:8-9 (NLT) Still other seeds fell on fertile soil, and they sprouted, grew, and produced a crop that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as had been planted!”  Then he said, “Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand.”

One of William Barclay’s friends tells the story of a church where he worshipped that had a lonely old man, named Thomas, among the parishioners. Thomas was so old that he’d outlived all his friends and hardly anyone really knew him or paid him much mind. When old Thomas died, Barclay’s friend was concerned that no one would show up for the funeral so he decided to go just so that there would be someone who would follow the mortal remains of the old man to his final resting place.

The day of the funeral was miserable – even by English standards, and as it turned out, there was no one except this one man who bothered to show up. The service concluded and when the hearse reached the cemetery, a soldier stood waiting at the gate. The man deduced that the soldier was an officer, but there were no insignia nor rank badges on his wet raincoat. Still, the soldier came to the grave side for the ceremony and when it was over, he stepped forward and before the open grave swept his hand to a salute that was worthy of a king. The friend walked away with this soldier, and as they walked, the wind blew the soldier’s raincoat open to reveal the shoulder badges of a brigadier general.

The general said, “You will perhaps be wondering what I am doing here. Years ago Thomas was my Sunday School teacher; I was a wild lad and a sore trial to him. He never knew what he did for me, but I owe everything I am or will be to old Thomas, and today I had to come to salute him at the end.” Thomas had no idea what he had done for this man.

The simple fact is this: no preacher or teacher, no friend who shares the good news or who lives it out in front of others ever does know what becomes of the seed that has been sown. We don’t have to know.  Our desire to know would only feed our pride and ego.  Perhaps that’s why God doesn’t let us know.  Our job is simply to keep sowing the seed, leaving the rest to God and trusting that God can see, water and nourish that seed for His glory, not for ours. We can with confidence leave the rest to God. And that is good news for all us tenant farmers who are planting seeds in the soil He created.

PRAYER: Father, produce a harvest for Your glory through our meager and paltry efforts, and help us to never, ever stop spreading the good news!! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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DayBreaks for 03/11/13 – Using Up the Ground

DayBreaks for 03/11/13 – Using Up the Ground              

thevinedresserandthefigtreeLuke 13:6-9 (ESV) – And he told this parable: “A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none.  7 And he said to the vinedresser, ‘Look, for three years now I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and I find none. Cut it down. Why should it use up the ground?’  8 And he answered him, ‘Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and put on manure.  9 Then if it should bear fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.’”

Israel is not a large country. Soil was, and still is, at a premium in Israel. It was not unusual for a vineyard owner to give a little bit of his soil up for a fruit tree but the tree took up the best soil, the deepest soil, and required the most water. Three years after planting the fig tree, the owner came looking for fruit on the fig tree and found none.  A fig tree doesn’t grow fruit until three years after planting. So, the owner in this story, had given the tree “due season”, plenty of time, to bear fruit and yet there was none.  All this fig tree did was take up valuable soil and water and energy.  The owner questioned why the tree was allowed to “even use up ground.”

God had given the Israelites the choicest ground. Their land possessed everything necessary to make themselves a great nation, indeed, a light to all nations. They were strategically positioned to send the fruit of God north and south, east and west; but instead, in-fighting continued to make them a worthless fruit tree.

God has given America extremely choice ground.  The American church is the richest group of Christians to ever exist on the face of the earth – by far.  As individuals, we are all rich.  We all have been “planted” here by God, but not just for our own sake.  We’ve been planted here for His purposes…to cooperate and be a part of His plan, to be useful to Him – not to ourselves.

Everyone one of us and all of our churches will have to answer (from God’s perspective) this same question: “Why does it even use up the ground?”  What answer would you give God?  What answer would you give to anyone around you for why you exist?  What fruit are you bearing?  (If you’re not bearing fruit…go back and read the parable again.  You won’t like what you see!)

PRAYER: Lord, I don’t want to just use up ground, to occupy a position in space and time.  I want to be useful to You and for You.  I pray that all of us will be open to what You want to do with us and not our own will. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2013 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

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NOTE: Galen has started work as a missionary with Medical Ambassadors International (MAI) (  He needs to raise his own support.  DayBreaks has always been free – and will remain so – but if you wish to help support Galen in his ministry work with MAI, you can make a donation to Medical Ambassadors on his behalf.  One-time donations may be made online at  Go to that link and look down the left side of the page until you find the SUPPORT MISSIONARIES section and look for the link for Galen Dalrymple.  Click his name and you’ll be taken to PayPal where you can donate to his account.  If you wish to make a recurring donation, contact or call her at 209-543-7500 ext. 219.  You can also write a check to Medical Ambassadors International (a 501.c.3 non-profit – meaning your donations are deductible) and put S090 in the Memo field.  Mail the check to Medical Ambassadors International, P.O. Box 1302, Salida, CA 95368. 

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DayBreaks for 05/16/12 – No Proclamation Needed

DayBreaks for 05/16/12 – No Proclamation Needed

The evidence is clear…

Matthew 7:16 (NLT) – You can identify them by their fruit, that is, by the way they act. Can you pick grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles?

John 13:35 (NLT) – Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.

The visitors walked through the orchard, among the trees heavy with ripe, juicy apples. The branches drooped down toward the earth from the weight of their fruit. The farmer, who has lovingly cared for the trees for many years, smiles with delight as he leads the tour. He explains how he has carefully cared for each tree, pruning it so that it would give its best yield. There is one thing that he did not inform the group. He did not tell them that this was an apple orchard. There was no need. The orchard was filled with apple tress. The fruit made it obvious.

Have you noticed how some people are so quick to profess and proclaim their Christianity?  I know that we are to confess and be witnesses, but have you ever felt that some folks were working hard to make it obvious by telling everyone about their faith and commitment?  It is almost as if they are trying to convince not only others, but themselves, about their faith.

If asked, we should proclaim our allegiance.  If persecuted, we should hold tight to our confession.  But in everyday life, we shouldn’t have to say a word because it should be clear to everyone, obvious even, Who we belong to by the fruit we bear and the love we have for one another.  Does that describe you?

PRAYER: May our walk with you be so close that there will never be any reason for someone to question who is the Lord of our life!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2012 by Galen C. Dalrymple.

I Am 2 is now engaged in a project to provide temporary shelter, food, water and adult care to 37 orphans in Migori, Kenya.  We are trying to raise up an army of compassionate people who will each contribute whatever they can – even $5-10 each, to help us provide care for these children until our partner in the project, BrightPoint for Children, can secure sponsorships for these 37 kids.  If you want to contribute, follow this link and scroll down to find the “Donate” button: Help the 37 Migori Orphans

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