“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 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 15:1-2 (NIV)
I have not had the best of attitudes regarding your pruning in my life. Why is that? Pruning is not comfortable. Pruning is not easy. Pruning is not pain free. On top of that, your pruning is not always easily recognizable. No, it is not. I can’t tell you how many times I have resisted painful circumstances that I have gone through only to realize much later that you were pruning something out of my life. I certainly wasn’t welcoming your pruning in my life. In fact, I would have to say, that I have often done everything in my power, many times unknowingly, to avoid your pruning in my life. That’s not good. No, it is not. Would you rather I did not prune your life? No, I would not. I would rather wish that I did not need any pruning. That is not going to happen. You have needed and will continue to need my pruning in your life. Don’t ever come to think that you are beyond any need of my pruning. My pruning will continue in your life until the day you come to live forever in heaven with me. I understand. Yes, I know that you do understand. It pleases me that you are now understanding and welcoming my pruning in your life. That does not mean that I am not still a little uneasy about my being pruned. Yes, I know.
I want you to do something. What’s that? I want you to think back over your past and try to identify times when I was pruning your life. I will do that. I have several questions I would like you to consider. Like what? Did you know that I was pruning your life at the time? Did you try to hold on to what I wanted to prune out of your life? Did your life become more fruitful as a result of my pruning your life? Do you have any regrets about the ways in which I have pruned your life? I will do what you are asking of me. What do you think will be the value of doing what I am asking of you? I will better understand your pruning activity in my life. I will be more comfortable with and welcoming of your pruning activity in my life. I’m sure that I will also more easily recognize your pruning activity in my life. Yes, you will. I have one final question. I’m listening. Why do I prune your life? You prune my life because you love and care for me. Yes, I do. Thank you, Heavenly Father.
Heavenly Father, I have not always welcomed your pruning activity in my life. Oftentimes, I have not even been able to recognize when you were pruning me. But I now welcome all your pruning activity in my life. I want to bear an abundance of fruit for you. Amen
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