Have you ever been very uncomfortable? Maybe it was a situation you didn’t want to be in; or maybe you experienced something you’ve never before experienced and the newness forced you out of your comfort zone. Or maybe something or someone was removed from you or your life that you would rather not have removed?
Being uncomfortable is, well, uncomfortable! Understandably, the situations we encounter can feel almost unfair at times and so we might even ask God, “Don’t you see what’s going on?” and we can even begin to think God’s punishing us for something we did in the past. Friends, God’s not going to re-punish you for what He already punished Christ for on the cross.
The Bible refers to this process as pruning. Pruning involves cutting off the dead branches and cutting back the living branches, both to shape a tree or vine and to stimulate growth.
Pruning may be one of the most uncomfortable processes in a Christian’s life, but it is also one of the most vital processes. Jesus states in John 15 verse 2 that, “every branch that does bear fruit will be pruned, so that it may bear MORE fruit!”
Christ’s desire is not to make us as uncomfortable and miserable as possible, He desires to see us prosper and bear fruit for His glory, but where we find it is in Him. “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” Matthew 6:33.
Jesus goes on to say in John 15:7, “If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.”
You see, all that the vine possesses, belongs to, and is at the disposal of the branches. All of Christ’s fullness and riches are for you; for the vine does not live for itself but only exists for the branches. Every power of our being, every moment of our lives, every thought and feeling, belong to Jesus . . . that from Him and for Him, we may bear fruit.
Friends, God is for you; He’s not against you. He will never leave you, nor forsake you, and your greatest days are still ahead of you! Allow God to prune you during this fast and allow Jesus to indeed be your True Vine, bearing you, nourishing you, supplying you, using you and filling you to make you wholly and completely His, that you may bear more fruit than ever before, for His glory!