This morning after sleeping in (favorite thing to do) I got up and did a little bit of house work. Even though it's my birthday, I can't let things get out of sorts or it makes me nervous. So I did some dishes and laundry but then I noticed how one of my plants was in need of help and desperately needed pruning. I went over and decided it would only take five minutes to prune it, so - birthday or not, I started on it. When Jordan saw me take the knife and cut all of the leaves off of the corn plant down to tiny little stubbs, he looked over and said, "Mom, what are you doing? Why did you just cut all of that off down to nothing?!! It looks terrible!! " I said, "for it's health, Jordan. It needed to be pruned so it could grow again, and just watch, in a few months it's going to look like that one over there," I said pointing to a plant I had pruned months ago which is now flourishing and full of bright green healthy leaves.
Standing there holding all the mess in my hands that I had just cut off, I heard the voice of the Lord loud clear in my heart saying, "WHAT DO YOU THINK I'M DOING IN YOUR SITUATION, DEANNA?" Oh my. I was so struck by hearing the voice of the Lord, I had to go sit down.
I quickly threw the plant mess away and went in and got out my devotional books and Bible since I hadn't done my devotions for the day yet. I felt the Lord's presence in a real way and wanted to soak it in . I have been reading, "Streams in the Desert" for the past few days along with the Word for my devos and I opened it up and would you believe, THIS is the entry for August 1st!!!
Pruned to Yield Fruit
"And every branch that beareth fruit he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit" (John 15:2).
A child of God was dazed by the variety of afflictions which seemed to make her their target. Walking past a vineyard in the rich autumnal glow she noticed the untrimmed appearance and the luxuriant wealth of leaves on the vines, that the ground was given over to a tangle of weeds and grass, and that the whole place looked utterly uncared for; and as she pondered, the Heavenly Gardener whispered so precious a message that she would fain pass it on: "My dear child, are you wondering at the sequence of trials in your life? Behold that vineyard and learn of it. The gardener ceases to prune, to trim, to harrow, or to pluck the ripe fruit only when he expects nothing more from the vine during that season. It is left to itself, because the season of fruit is past and further effort for the present would yield no profit. Comparative uselessness is the condition of freedom from suffering. Do you then wish me to cease pruning your life? Shall I leave you alone?" And the comforted heart cried, "No!" --Homera Homer-Dixon
It is the branch that bears the fruit,
That feels the knife,
To prune it for a larger growth,
A fuller life.
Though every budding twig be lopped,
And every grace
Of swaying tendril, springing leaf,
Be lost a space.
O thou whose life of joy seems reft,
Of beauty shorn;
Whose aspirations lie in dust,
All bruised and torn,
Rejoice, tho' each desire, each dream,
Each hope of thine
Shall fall and fade;
it is the hand of Love Divine
That holds the knife,
that cuts and breaks
With tenderest touch,
That thou, whose life has borne some fruit
May'st now bear much.
--Annie Johnson Flint
Above is the photo of my pruned corn plant. Some things needed to be removed so it could grow again. I'm sure it was a little traumatizing to the plant, but it's going to flourish again, and so is everything else that concerns me. So is everything else. I hear you, Lord.
** lots else happening today but they deserve posts of their own just like this did...so I will be back several times today. Keep checking. Gosh, this day is unfolding in the most interesting way...