Michael Jackson was seen by many to have lived a fruitful life. He was connected to the movers and shakers in the music industry from a very early age. From the Jackson 5 singing, “ABC”, to the 1982 album “Thriller” that sold over 100 million copies, he became the king of pop. Five years later, Bad sold 22 million copies. In 1991, he signed a $65 million recording deal with Sony. Jackson was so popular that The Walt Disney jumped on board and launched a 3-D movie at its parks called “Captain EO.” One of Jackson’s most lucrative deals was the $47.5 million acquisition of ATV Music, which owned the copyright to songs written by the Beatles’ John Lennon and Paul McCartney. The royalties from these songs gave Jackson the money to live a lavish lifestyle. But, my how is life began to fall apart. What a shock this week to hear of his death.
Jesus said in 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.
The fruitfulness here isn’t financial, material. It’s not popularity, and power. Those things can’t truly satisfy, and make us happy. With all that he had, Michael Jackson wasn’t a happy man. 50 facial surgeries later and he still wasn’t happy with himself.
What kind of fruitfulness are we talking about? It’s the fruit of the life of Christ in us. Notice with me Galatians 5:22-23 – But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control… When we are connected to the true vine these qualities that are most supremely found in Christ begin to grow in us.
One psychiatrist said, Jackson’s problem was that he wasn’t connected to his inner self. What Michael was really missing was connection to the true vine – to the blessing, abundance, fulfillment, and refreshment that only connection with him can bring.