In the spring of 2017, I was in the middle of a Bible study on the gospel of John with a group of sweet ladies from my church. After months of mulling over a new name for the shop, I sat down one week to prepare for class, and John 15 stopped me in my tracks. As I read the words, I felt an undeniable sense of rightness. It would take me many more months to arrive at a final name, but I kept circling back to John 15. I knew that it was important.
Jesus' instructions about abiding in him are at the heart of what we do here at Muscadine Press. Every single item that we develop has been carefully designed to help normal, everyday people like you and me cultivate faithfulness and abide in Jesus.
Our theme verse is John 15:5: "I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing." As believers, we're branches of that vine, offshoots from the main source of life, and we're called to bear fruit. Lots of it. Just like muscadines.
Now, if you're not from the South, you may be wondering what a muscadine is. Don't worry, you're not alone. Muscadines are a distinctly Southern variety of grape. They're happy to grow on their own in the wild, but they also flourish in cultivated vineyards. With a sweet flavor and tough skin, muscadines love the sun and produce more grapes than anyone knows what to do with.
Muscadine Press is a name rooted in the gospel, but it's also a little nod to my Southern heritage. It reminds me of the beautiful diversity of God's people. Some of us are muscadines. Some of us are concords. Some of us are lembergers. Some of us are sweet jubilees. Some of us are rieslings. But we're all his. And we're all called to cultivate a faithful life.
We're so excited to come alongside you as you cultivate faithfulness day by day. Can't wait to see what the Lord accomplishes in us and through us as we move forward.
Until next time, grace and peace.
Usually, when we talk about abiding in Christ, we talk about all the things that we do. Those things are important—we can and should do everything we can to abide in Jesus day in and day out—but here lately, God has been reminding me of how much he does to help us abide. He does it for our good and for his glory. Because when we abide in Christ, we can't help but bear good, ripe fruit. Lots of it. And when our lives are both abundant and fruitful, we glorify him.
Back when my girls were in preschool, I was overwhelmed and struggling to keep up. It was my job to encourage others to read and understand Scripture, but in my personal life I could hardly manage to find time to read the Bible for myself, which made me feel like the biggest phony ever. Something had to give, and that’s when Muscadine Press was born.