Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Pruning Pains

Once again God’s timing is perfect!  Not that I’m saying it ever hasn’t been just that it always IS!

This year has been a pruning season for our family.  As we continue to seek God’s best for us – in His faithfulness He prunes away what is stopping us from reflecting the image of His Son.

Off of our deck is the beautiful lilac bush that I take all of my summer photos of many different color butterflies.

 butterfly-7 butterfly-15 flowers-4

In March I cut it down to almost 3ft tall and the children cry each year.  They are so concerned that I have ruined the bush and that no butterflies will come.  Then a few months later it is over 8 ft tall again.  They are amazed.  They can spend hours like me just sitting and watching all of the butterflies come to the bush.  They have learned so much about God’s love for them through His tender care of each butterfly.  Not to mention through the beauty of each one and the detail He took in creating so many varieties.

I pray this devotional encourages you today to seek His best through the pruning knowing He sees the end result of every snip and cut He takes off!

Pruning Pains
Tuesday / July 06, 2010

"Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit" (John 15:2).

As we walked through the garden one morning during our summer break from homeschooling, my daughter watched as I began to pinch off the tops of several tomato plants. With a shocked look on her face, she cried, "Mom, what are you doing? We've been trying to get these

"No," I gently responded. "These plants have grown tall enough. If I don't cut them back now, they'll only grow more vines instead of tomatoes. We need to break off the top, so the energy of the plant goes toward bearing fruit."

"OK," she replied hesitantly in disbelief. "But I sure hope you know what you're doing."

The process of pruning can also seem shocking in our spiritual lives. When God allows circumstances that outwardly appear to destroy our hopes and dreams, we may humanly react like my young daughter in the garden. Not understanding the purpose behind the pain, we are tempted to believe that God doesn't know what He is doing or He doesn't love us. However, if we learn to come to the Lord in humility and total dependence during these trying times, He will carefully shape our character into the image of His Son. In the end, the fruit of righteousness that God desires in all His children will be produced from His careful and loving pruning.

Do you feel like your life is in the pruning process? If circumstances seem to be robbing your joy and causing you to doubt God's love, don't let your pain cause you to run from the Lord. Instead, run into the arms of your loving Father and allow the Holy Spirit to comfort you, as God continues to perfect the good work He has begun in you. "My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing" (James 1:2-4).

Father God, my heart aches from the problems in my life, but I choose to reach out in faith and believe You are in control. Please, show me Your loving grace and help me to understand the work You're doing in my life. In Jesus' name, Amen.

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2 comments:

  1. Ohhh, that prayer is so where I'm at right now in my life!!

    I just had a conversation with my husband a couple nights ago about how I know the Lord is pruning me/(us)! I gave him an analogy of the plants being cut back, too. He is a Jersey boy who grows tomatoes, too! =) He loves analogies and especially those he can totally relate to like that! He agrees, we totally see it in our lives.

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  2. thank you for this beautiful post. I love the analogy of pruning...

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