A devotional from Dr. Bill Bright with Campus Crusade for Christ
A Greater Harvest
“He has already tended to you by pruning you back for greater strength and usefulness by means of the commands I gave you” (John 15:3).
My friend was in the process of pruning his vineyard, and it appeared to me – in my limited knowledge of vineyards – that the pruning was too severe. Only the main stump remained. I inquired, “Why have you pruned the vine back to just the main stump?”
“Because,” he said, “that is the way to ensure that it will produce a greater harvest. Otherwise the nourishment flowing up through the roots would be dissipate in keeping the vines alive. It could not produce the maximum number of grapes.”
It is my regular prayer that God will keep both me as an individual and the movement of which I am a part well pruned that we may not waste time, energy, talent and money producing beautiful foliage with no fruit. Our subjection to that pruning can be either voluntary or reluctant. How much better is it for us to invite the Lord to do the pruning than to have the pruning forced upon us over our protests.
The best possible way to cooperate in God’s pruning is to study His Word. Memorize and meditate upon His truths, obey His commandments and claim His promises.”
We had crape myrtles in our front yard at the home I grew up in, and I remember every fall Mom would cut them back. Way, way back. I remember cringing a bit after she completed the task because the shrubs looked so sad, so barren, and almost dead. But in the spring, oh in the spring, they were glorious with their bright fuschia blooms!
Our faith is like those crape myrtles. We need pruning each season. The pruning is tedious, difficult, painful at times, and we are left depleted. Depleted of ourselves, our own foolishness, and ambition, so that He may fill us up and we bear much fruit according to His perfect will and not our own.
So, I ask you. What are the areas in your life that need pruning? What needs to be cut away and redeemed?
So many areas of my life need to be cut back so badly. So many areas to be redeemed and healed.
Pray for pruning.
Ask Him to fill you in that emptiness.
May His will be evident in our lives and we bear much fruit to give Him glory! Amen!