I used to really enjoy writing compositions in Primary School. English was my all-time favourite subject. My teacher would ask us to write stories using titles such as, a�?myself as a shoea�� or a�?myself as a coina�� and I loved it. While writing these stories my imagination would go wild and you would be amazed at some of the things I came up with.
A few days ago I was reminded of these stories while reading and meditating on St. John 15. In verses 1-2 it said, a�?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.a�?
As I read the verses the word, a�?prunea�� jumped out at me and I asked myself, a�?what is pruning?a�� then I decided to get more information.
a�?Pruning is a horticultural and silvicultural practice involving the selective removal of parts of a plant, such as branches, buds, or roots. Reasons to prune plants include deadwood removal, shaping (by controlling or directing growth), improving or maintaining health, reducing risk from falling branches, preparing nursery specimens for transplanting, and both harvesting and increasing the yield or quality of flowers and fruits.a�? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pruning
After I read about the practice of pruning my imagination kicked in. I was back in primary school again, imagining a�?myself as a tree.a�� I thought of myself in a garden, standing big and strong. I saw myself with really big branches, some with nice fruits on them. I imagined other plants looking on in awe of my strength and beauty.
a�?Ahh just look at her, she has been through so many storms but still she stands.a��
Just when I believe I am at the pinnacle of my growth the owner of the garden steps in and does the unthinkable. He gets a sharp tool and he trims off all of my branches. He goes in deep and he dismembers me. In the process, I am not even able to recognize who I am, neither can my friends or family recognize me and he has the nerve to tell me it is for my own good, It is so he can control and direct my growth and make me more fruitful.
Can you imagine the pain I feel? Can you imagine the confusion? Can you imagine how I cry out as I am being stripped of things that I may want to hold on to? Can you imagine the screams as the gardener reaches in on the inside to prune me?
This act of pruning is something we all go through whether we like it or not. Surrendering our lives to God is the easy part, after that we have to undergo a process of change.
When we stand before God He sees things in us that need to be stripped away, aspects of our personalities and character and He starts to work. Some of these things we are not even aware of while some we embrace as just being who we are.
When God sees us He doesna��t see who we are now but who we are destined to be. We wona��t become that great Mother or Teacher or Pastor or Attorney overnight. In order to fit into these roles we must possess certain characteristics and God knows it so He prunes us.
I would lie if I tell you it is easy – the act of pruning is quite painful, (God knows how many times I have cried). Most of the time you wona��t even know what is going on, you may feel confused. You may feel as if you are making 10 steps back when you think you should be going forward. All you will feel is pain and you know what it is alright.
As long as you just choose to trust the Gardener – As long as you just trust that He will work everything out for your good – As long as you just believe that your latter will be greater than your former – As long as you just know that He is not looking to harm you, He is not stripping things away because He hates you but rather because He loves you and He wants you to prosper – As long as you do that you will be alright.
Don’t hate the process; canadian-pharmacy-24h. just trust the One who is taking you through it. He knows the end from the beginning; He knows who He wants you to become.
[photo credit: treesquirrel.us]