Three unending necessities: cutting and pruning.
The Back Yard
My back yard is mostly swimming pool, with flower beds lining the fence on three sides. There is no grass, but there’s plenty of everything else:
- Ground cover
The challenge is that it all wants to expand, climb, and thrive. If left alone for more than a week, it turns into jungle. So, it necessitates constant cutting, pruning, thinning, and shaping.
I could pay a service to handle it. I could uproot and tear it all out. I could leave it to its natural state of unchecked growth.
Or, I can keep taking care of it so it keeps looking beautiful.
“I am the vine and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while very branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.” (John 15:1-2)
“A man had a fig tree, planted in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it but did not find any. So, he said to the man who took care of the vineyard, ‘For three years now I’ve been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and haven’t found any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the soil?’” (Luke 13:6-7)
Jesus understood vineyards and orchards. Good fruit grows from good trees and healthy vines.
We are planted in the vineyard of Christ, and he’s looking for fruit. He cuts off the unfruitful branches and prunes the fruitful ones.
Either way, we’re being cut and pruned, its life in the kingdom.