Let’s talk about fruit.
Can you imagine, if you were a fruit tree, what it must feel like to have your branches trimmed back or cut off altogether? Doesn’t sound like fun.
But wait… we are a fruit trees… so you already know what I’m talking about! The Bible says God’s children are designed to bear fruit, but when our branches aren’t producing as they should, the Vinedresser shows up with His pruning shears.
Someone might ask, “How do I know if I’m bearing fruit or not?” This is a good question. On an apple tree, you can simply look for juicy, red apples to know if it’s producing or not. But in the life of a Christian, how can you tell? And by what standard does God use to determine if we are bearing fruit or not?
The Book of James gives us a clue. He said, “For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. But the wisdom that is from above [from God] is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace” (James 3:16-18).
If the Vinedresser sees envy, self-seeking, confusion, and hypocrisy (just to name a few), we need to get ready. He is bound to pull out His pruning shears because He doesn’t want (or need) that kind of fruit to multiply. (Can you say “Snip! Snip!”)
But notice something… If He finds purity, peace, gentleness, self-sacrificing, and mercy without prejudice, His pruning shears still come out. (Snip! Snip!) Only this time, it’s for the opposite reason–He wants to multiply the fruit.
Jesus said, “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it might bear more fruit” (John 15:1-2). [bctt tweet=”For Christians, the snip is unavoidable. #pruning #winning” via=”no”]
Therefore, our response has to be trust.
The Holy Spirit recently said to me, “You’ve been pruned. How long are you going to keep looking at the branches on the ground?”
He was right. I can’t reattach them and by lingering in thought over the fallen branches, I’m not trusting God.
Just like a natural vinedresser can inspect the branches of a tree and determine what needs to go and what needs to be pruned back, we need to trust God as the Vinedresser, even when we can’t see what He can.
The best advice I can give you is to always trust the Vinedresser. But don’t be deceived by the enemy who would want you to believe every bad thing that happens is God’s will. This simply isn’t true. God is alway for us– and therefore, any pruning He does is for our good, never for our bad.
So spread your branches and let the pruning begin. In the end, fruit will abound.