There comes a time to cut away in order to grow – to remove even the good for our best to emerge. Cutting hurts and we seek to avoid it if we can. But growth comes through necessary pruning.
When the expectation is fruit – any branch that does not bear fruit is understandably cut off.
We get this intuitively even if we don’t practice it consistently.
What are the things in our life that are no longer bearing fruit?
Are we holding on to a toxic relationship or a job that is soul-killing, for example? Do our online habits feed us and bring us life, or do they leave us empty and still wanting afterwards?
Like a good gardener, we need to regularly evaluate our life and remove any dead or sick branches that are no longer bearing fruit.
But maybe the harder practice is pruning even the good branches so they will produce even more fruit.
While we understand the need to remove the bad, it’s difficult to understand how removing good is also occasionally needed.
For example, we might have a great job that pays well. But the job does not allow us to do the work we are called to do. Giving up this job allows us to bear fruit fulfilling our calling.
Likewise, we may be part of a wonderful small group, but realize we’re not fostering the community we desire. Letting go of this small group allows us to bear the fruit of true community and intimacy.
What good things do we need to let go of to bear more fruit?
Removing the bad is generally easier to see. And it takes a lot of wisdom and discernment to know how to prune the good. But we must do both to grow into all God has for us.
Prune your life and bring even more goodness and joy into the world.