“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 NIV)
If you want to bear good fruit, let God prune you. Pruning involves removing any dead limbs which no longer produce fruit. Only God is able to see the dead limbs in our lives. When pruning, farmers remove branches for two reasons: open branches to allow more sunlight and encourage fruiting spurs to grow. When God prunes us, the same effect happens. More Son light flows into our lives, budding fruits of the spirit grow. If we want to bear good fruit, God needs to prune us.
If we want to bear good fruit, God needs to prune us.
God prunes our relationships by removing people from our lives. One way God taught me this happened when I was single. I went on blind dates, I used online services and joined singles groups. I was intentional about forming relationships. However, my heart often was hurt by the rejection I received. Blind dates I thought went well, never called back. Online matches would close the connection before a date happened. I met a lot of friends in singles groups, but no love matches. I didn’t understand why, then I realized, God is pruning me.
I learned, God knew more than I did about the people I was interacting with in these situations. He knew the conversations they had I didn’t. He knew the activities they did. He knew their hearts. He removed these people from my life because they were bad branches for me. He knew if He allowed them to grow in my life, they wouldn’t produce good fruit. Instead, He used this as a way to draw me closer to Him. I learned to trust Him more. Once I realized, He was protecting me from heading in the wrong direction, I accepted the rejection easier. As a result I produced good fruit.
God prunes bad relationships from our lives. Unhealthy people cannot have healthy relationships. My pastor used this analogy to help me understand. Two friends are driving down the road. The car gets a flat tire. They pull over to fix the flat. Once repaired, the driver is ready to continue on the journey. The passenger decides he doesn’t want to go any further, he likes the scenery on the side of the road. The driver now needs to decide: do I stay with my friend or continue on the journey?
The driver doesn’t want to leave his friend behind, but in order to continue growing, he must. We make the same decisions when in relationships that aren’t healthy. We can’t force people to take the journey with us. Fortunately, God does the pruning for us. Our job is to let Him.
Question of the Day:
Who has God pruned from your life that you’re still holding onto?
Further Reading: 2 Samuel 9-11 NIV, John 15:1-27 NIV, Psalm 119:49-64 NIV, Proverbs 16:1-3 NIV