bright spring

I love color in the summer, don’t you? On my back porch I have several flowers. I love rose bushes, so I have a couple those and then I have several other pots of flowers, it looks so pretty to see them all blooming and doing well.

All my favorite flowers have one thing in common, they bloom continuously and I have to continually remove the dead blooms so that new live blooms can appear. I was doing this the other day and Brailee said ‘Nana, why are you doing that?’ I said ‘we have to pinch the dead ones away, their time has passed and we have to make room for the new blooms.’ ‘Oh’ she said…as if she understood. She sat down and helped me pick away the dead from the flowers. The next day they had perked right back up and looked full of life again.

This is not something I can do one time and never again; this has to be done over and over again, all summer long. Towards the end of the summer, I often get tired of doing this and let them go for a few weeks. When I do that, they eventually stop blooming and then die. Sad, but true. Yet, all summer, I pull all the dead ones off every other day and enjoy the beauty for the season.
God has been doing something in my life lately. He has been cutting away the things that are not filled with life or producing life. Some of those things are things…stuff that keeps me too busy that is not God busy. Some of those things are people. Some of those things are thoughts that do not line up with Gods plan and purpose for my life.

I once thought that God would eventually get me ‘cleaned up’ and I would leave that season and move into a time of never needing things plucked away again….boy was I wrong! God is continually working on me, continually showing me a better way, continually cutting things out of my life. I am a work in progress and I probably always will be.

The thing I have learned is yes, this does come in seasons, the time of pruning away the dead parts of my life. And after that season comes the time of seeing the fruit, the beautiful things blooming in my life. They were there all along, but once the dead is cut away, just like my flowers, you can see the fullness of life in the blooms.

I used to hate the time of pruning and cutting away, but I have come to love it. Why? Because I choose life. And if there are things, or people, or plans, or thoughts in my life that are no longer producing fruit, I want them gone as much as God does and now, I yield to the pruning.

I once saw a friend prune a tree so drastically that I thought it would never bloom again. However, as the season changed, that tree was the most beautiful thing. The pruning didn’t destroy it, it simply allowed the life within it to shine forth and blossom.

Maybe you are going through a time of pruning or perhaps you have gone through such a time. Don’t see it as a bad thing; embrace it. Don’t see it as something God is doing TO you, know that it is something God is doing FOR you and something God is doing THROUGH you and IN you. He knows the beauty that is inside of you and He wants to trim away all the dead things so that the life of Christ in you shines forth in its fullness – allow Him to do just that – don’t resist – yield to His faithful hands, He knows what He is doing.

John 15:1-2 says; 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 it so that it may bear more fruit.

God prunes at two times, when something isn’t bearing fruit and when it is bearing fruit – to empower it to bear more fruit. So, you see, God is always pruning… yield to it.

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