You were made to bear fruit. You were made to flourish like a branch connected to the vine and cared for by the Master Vinedresser. By God’s wonderful design, you are meant to be a tree of righteousness, a planting of the Lord to bring glory to His name! (See Isaiah 61:3.)

“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 may bear more fruit.” John 15:1-2 NKJV

Are You Overgrown?

But what happens when a tree becomes overgrown? What happens when the weight of the fruit threatens to break the branches? Have you ever felt like that? Weighed down by the cares of this life – the schedules, the obligations, that craziness of going from one thing to the next with hardly a pause in between.

Am I talking to anyone out there?

Have you ever gotten to the point where you simply shut down? The pressure becomes too great, and you melt down in front of your kids or your husband… or escape to the couch with the remote control and a tub of ice cream.

Production stops. Fruit-bearing stops. You put life and everyone in it “on hold” until you can find your way through the mess that life has become.

God Has a Plan

Dear friend, can I show you another way? When you’re feeling the weight of the world on your shoulders, can I offer a gentle nudge, a friendly reminder that you are not alone? God is watching over you as the Vinedresser and the Master Gardener.

When your life feels overgrown, He has a solution.


Look up, and you’ll see He is there, with shears in hand, a wise eye, and skillful hands. If you will yield, He will begin…

Lopping off a branch here and trimming up an offshoot there. If you’ve ever pruned a tree (or watched it done), it’s like a master artist at work – carefully trimming and artfully shaping. Not afraid to cut, careful not to harm.

The pruned plant may look stark at first, but then the tree, the vine or the rose bush responds. It rewards the gardener with fruit. A myriad of blossoms, thick and rich and able to produce – and because of the pruning, able to bear the weight of the increased abundance.

Is God Pruning Your Life?

I’ve seen God’s pruning at work in my own life. A sense that He was cutting something away – a business deal that never materialized, an outreach that ends, a relationship that drifts.

At times, it feels like a cutting back of an area that overgrew the time or capacity I realistically had to give it. I may sense a divine prompting to let go of one thing so I can more firmly grasp a more important thing for this moment or this season of life.

“Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward, it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” Hebrews 12:11

Other times, it may be a correction – the discipline or “chastening” of the Father at work in my life. It’s a pruning to correct a wild “offshoot” or reel me in from something I never should have taken on in the first place.

It may be an over-commitment of time, energy or brainpower. It may be a distraction, a project, or a cause I have passion for, but the further involved I get, the more I sense God’s “no” or “not now” in my spirit.

Have you ever felt that? Have you ever dived into something with zeal, only to find out later that the commitment is way beyond what you can manage right now?

Yielding to the Process

The process of pruning can be challenging. In fact, sometimes it’s painful, uncomfortable or even embarrassing. But I’ve found that when I yield – when I trust the Master’s hand upon my life – there is peace in the pruning. There is a promise: when one thing is cut back, something better can take its place.

Hope comes. Expectation and joyful anticipation fill my soul. Something good happens when I let God work in my life. Something better than my ambitions or silly diversions.

If God is pruning your life, I pray you will embrace His work with joyful expectation.

Something good is on the horizon. Watch for it. Wait for it. Trust God in it. He has created you to bear fruit – fruit that remains, fruit that abounds. Sometimes, it takes pruning to realize the full potential of your life so you can flourish.

“The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life…” Proverbs 11:30

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