Friday, January 16, 2015

Make Us Fruitful!


John 15:2
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.

Our home is surrounded by trees.  It's wonderful in the summertime when the southern sun beats down brutally, yet we stay cool and comfortable beneath a lush canopy of leaves.

There are drawbacks, however.

Dead branches.  Arching over our roof.



Hanging precariously over our deck.



A potential disaster just waiting to happen . . .

My husband, Danny, finally decides it's high time to have the branches removed right before our family is to gather here for Thanksgiving.  As always, he does his research before hiring a company.  Danny finds one that is not only reputable, but also offers what we both agree is a more than fair price to take down these "limbs of doom."

Fascinated by the whole process, and amazed at the young man who seamlessly scales the tree trunk, I decide to capture some moments with my camera.
















What a relief it is to have the branches not bearing fruit removed from the otherwise healthy and thriving trees!  Maybe, in their own mysterious way, the trees appreciate it, too.  Freed from excess and unnecessary baggage, they can continue to grow, stretching their fruitful branches heavenward like arms raised in grateful prayer and praise to God.

~

Are you in need of some spiritual pruning?  Pray to the Master Gardener, the One who can trim those dead limbs of yours and make you a new creation in Him.

Prayer:  Father, please make us fruitful for the sake of Your Kingdom.  Cut away from our hearts and souls those dead places which keep us from connecting fully with You.  Prune us for Your honor and glory.  In Jesus' name, amen.

16 comments:

  1. dear Martha, you turn such simple activities into wonderful lessons to be learned!
    -Portia

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    1. Thank you, dear Portia. I really do strive to see God's hand at work in the most mundane and ordinary things. Glad you enjoyed the post!
      Love and blessings!

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  2. You have a real gift in seeing God's hand in everything!

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    1. Thank you, Kathy! I try! :)
      Love and blessings!

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  3. Ahhhhh, your words are gentle as summer breezes yet sharp as the blades in your pictures. Thanks, Friend.

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    1. Thank you for this kind compliment, Miz Liz! So glad you enjoyed the post today.
      Love and blessings!

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  4. Great pictures and words that capture a truth worth repeating.

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    1. Thank you so much, Betty! I do agree that this is a truth which bears repeating.
      Love and blessings!

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  5. Martha, what a wonderful illustration! The spiritual pruning process is necessary but not so fun to go through at times. Yet the fruit that comes from it is worth it in the end. I'm thinking it's time for some spiritual pruning. It will be interesting to see what God does!

    Love and blessings!

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    1. Yes, it's not always easy or welcome, but as you say here, it is definitely worth it in the end. We can all use some of God's pruning from time to time.
      Love and blessings!

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  6. Oh yeah! the spiritual pruning is needed from time to time when I am reminded that I am getting too comfortable for the comfort zone and overlooking the higher being.

    Nice post Martha.

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    1. Thanks so much, Janaki! Yes - when we get too comfortable, that's exactly when we need pruning the most.
      Love and blessings!

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  7. I loved the Scripture you shared with this one, Martha! It made me smile, because I've been going through a personal pruning process of late. I think the turning over of a new year always prompts inner musings for many of us, and encourages some house cleaning of a tangible nature as well as of a spiritual nature.

    My Healing Morning blog carries the iconic image of the elm tree that stood on our property at home in Claxton, TN. Every couple of years, we would have to give that massive tree a "hair cut" of the outer limbs. They were so widely spread, and so large, similar to an umbrella's curvature, that they would bend down to the grassy field. My uncle would get the tractor out, hook up the old wagon, fill it with ropes and hand saws and chain saws, and several of us would spend the day winding around the perimeter of the tree, giving it a hair cut. The pruned limbs would go up in the hayloft of the barn to dry and cure for firewood. And the following spring, the elm tree would continue to flourish.

    I am smiling as I write this, because these are such bright, happy memories of home for me. I am curious to see what the approaching spring of my personal spirit will produce....what blossoms, what growth, what eventual fruit. :)

    Much love to you, chickadee! <3

    - Dawnie

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    1. Oh, Dawnie, thank you for sharing this wonderfully personal memory with everyone. So cool that this elm tree inspired the image you placed on your blog!
      And yes, I think the new year does make us think about what needs to go in our lives and what needs to stay. Here's to both of us letting God prune us where He will so we continue to flourish where we are planted!
      Love and blessings!

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  8. I agree 100% with Portia. I would have simply been making sure I stayed out of the way so a branch doesn't fall on my head:) Not learning a spiritual lesson and learning how to become closer with God. but you do have the most special ability to turn everyday happenings into lessons and prayers.

    "Stretching their fruitful branches heavenward like arms raised in grateful prayer and praise to God..." is such a poetic and lasting image.

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    1. Thank you so much, Vishnu, for your kind words; they mean so much, my friend! And the quote you mentioned here? That's my favorite sentence in the entire post. I love it when the Holy Spirit puts words in my heart and my head.
      Love and blessings!

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Psalm 139:14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Seven years ...