Last week this pic got uploaded but the words did not so today I’m giving you the words. I know someone needs to hear this today:
As we drove down to Southern California last week, we passed vineyard after vineyard.
After about the third one, I thought, “they look ready to bear fruit”.
Because they had been pruned back, braced up and almost stripped bare.
That is what Jesus said happens in the life of believer. Not just once but over and over. When God wants to grow you, he prunes you.
Over the years of driving down to Disneyland with my family and driving by countless vineyards, I’ve seen them in all the seasons:
Full and heavy with fruit in the summer.
Rioting wild with leaves after the harvest in the fall.
Barren and unkempt in the winter.
Pruned back, braced up and almost stripped bare in the spring.
The most fruitful vines are those that are cared for and pruned down.
You may not equate being pruned with being cared for but the best of vine dressers do. They lovingly and with ruthless care get the vineyard ready to bear fruit. They cut all the dead branches off. The dead leaves that have fallen to the ground are swept up and cleared out. The main branch that grows up from the vine is stripped down and simplified. They have braced up each one with wood or wire so that it will not break under the weight of its fruit later in the season.
Jesus called himself the vine, you the branch and the Father the vine dresser:
“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.”
John 15:1-2 NIV
If you feel like God is doing a clearing work in you, it is because He is preparing you.
He is getting you ready to bear more fruit.
He is caring for you and nurturing you.
He is cutting off dead things that will rot and bring disease to your soul.
He is simplifying your focus and prompting you to define more clearly who you are in Christ.
He is pruning you, even to cutting off some good branches that are stealing nutrients from the main one He wants to grow.
Don’t panic because if you are being pruned, stripped bare and braced up.
Recognize it for what it is- God preparing you for the next season of your life.
It’s going to be good, my friend, so hold on and trust God.