Tuesday, January 30, 2018
He Who Prunes
He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.” John 15:2
I have always loved cutting grass…or at least…riding around on the lawnmower. Even since childhood, we have had great riding lawnmowers. And as I write this, one of my best friends is already smiling remembering when we ran it right into a gutter on the house around 11 years of age. I have great memories of hours cutting grass, and even now I love to stream music in my earbuds and ride. There have been many prayers of thanksgiving, and many prayers of petition as I bounced around on that mower. However, the enjoyment of the ride depends on how I prepare the lawn. There are very few branches to pick up during the spring and summer. But this time of year there are dead branches laying around everywhere. It is important to discard these, so they won’t interfere with the goal.
This is also a very important principle in Christian living. Our lives are like a tree planted in our own garden. The details of our lives spread out like beautiful branches under a blue sky of blessings. One branch unapologetically boasts of children and grandchildren. One branch displays the strength of my original family in which God placed me. The branch of my Christian walk is a branch that supports much opportunity for fruit, as well as a branch of vocation. The one thing that these branches have in common is the trunk in which they are rooted. Without the connection to God we will live a life apart from being fruitful. God sees the beautiful potential of each healthy branch, and identifies which branch is fruitless. He determines the branches that need cutting back for future glories…fruit in season. We must allow God to determine which branches interfere with the goal. As God goes around our garden, discarding dead lifeless branches, He pictures the future springs and summers of our lives. He wants us to believe that any branch not worthy of fruit is a branch that is not grafted into Him. When we finally realize that fruit is not the end goal, but a delightful result from being rooted in God, our lives will multiply more fruit that we could have imagined.
“…you do not sustain the root, but the root sustains you.” Romans 11:18