Tending the Fruit

I have managed over the last few weeks to not kill a plant I bought. That is saying alot as I am prone to having a black thumb. As a part of my One Word for 2014 (GROW) I chose April to work on growing something physically. I grabbed a plant and off I went. Saturday I re-potted the plant along with a new one I purchased to go with the one I was currently tending to in the container it came in.

Maybe it’s not until you hone in on one thing that you begin to notice it all around you. In tending the plants, I saw how others were caring for theirs as well. I was intentional when I picked out marigolds to plant, that I get the ones which weren’t at full bloom but were still sprouting up, so that I could get the most of them for this spring/summer. I watched other budding gardeners pick out their plants and found I felt quite accomplished.

Buying plants isn’t just a one and done thing. You cannot just plant them and walk away. There is a commitment to care for them, as there would be for any other thing that is alive and growing in life.

It is true for my own life as well. Recently there has been alot of hurt and pulling inward. I was finding much of it relatively difficult to understand and navigate through. Then as I considered the parallels of my life with my new interest in gardening I could not help but see John 15:2(b):

“and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.”

For myself, I bear fruit for a season, but it is necessary to go through pruning after bearing fruit in order to grow and produce more. Do I enjoy the pruning? Absolutely not. Do I recognize it as pruning? Most often, no. I see it as circumstance happening to me, instead of for me.

Part of the reason one prunes a tree is to shape it for design purposes. While it is a difficult, and all too often painful process, pruning allows me to be shaped for His design. Something that I forget when I am in my circumstance, in the mire of emotion and doubt. His pruning is ultimately for my good as a fruit-bearer. Because as I bear out the fruit He receives the glory, as I cannot bear fruit alone.

In what areas is God pruning you back to bear fruit? How can your circumstances be seen differently today through your perspective as the tree/vine?