READ : John 15:1-8
The pruning shears of God can slash our comfortableness. Disappointments, death of a spouse, a child moving away, loss of work, failure in being understood cut away our contentment. Pruning is to allow more fruitfulness to grow in our lives. We question why God couldn’t use a less painful way to shape us to become more productive for Him.
God, as the gardener, made it clear He would take out whatever necessary to promote growth. As a Vietnamese farmer explained, “the `V’ of the pruning shear stands for victory, not victim.”
It is our response to the pruning which allows it to be a useful or useless experience. As Christians, we are not sheltered from the “slings and arrows” which distress humankind. I think of a recent verbal cut, coming from behind with no opportunity to respond nor confront. It hurt deeply, damaging trust. God had to show me how this could contribute to growth, to let it become either decay or discipline. Paul stated that “all things work together for good to them that love God” (Rom. 8:28). The “things” surely do not look good. They may look evil. Christians who grasp the truth of pruning may stumble, but they fall forward. They will let God take their circumstances to change lives for His glory.
We would bear beautiful fruit for You and Your kingdom, God. When You prune us, also heal us to be more useful. For Jesus’ sake. Amen.