April 30, 2011
(Jesus said) "Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit." John 15:2
Some people have a "green thumb."
As I am not one of them, I just admire their work and try not to get too close to their prized pansies.
You see, most of the plants I touch give up in despair.
That's why I was amazed to go to the state fair and see a pumpkin that weighed well over 300 pounds. I asked the gardener, who had raised the giant, how he had managed to grow such a monster.
He said, "I concentrate all the strength of the plant in one or two blooms. If I let the plant grow all the pumpkins it could, none would be worth showing. To grow a pumpkin like this you have to be content with one rather than a whole bunch."
I didn't expect to learn any religion from a pumpkin grower, but I did.
You see, God treats us much the same way as that gardener did his pumpkin plant.
We, like the plant, try to go this way and that. We try to accomplish everything; we want everything. The result is we don't get much done, and we end up with very little.
The Lord, with gentle pruning which is motivated by love, directs the growth of His people in such a way that we produce fruit which can be magnificent.
Now what does all this have to do with you? It's simply this: if you feel like you're being pruned right now and your plans aren't working the way you intended, maybe it's possible the Lord who has sent His Son to save you, is making it so you can do some great things in thanksgiving.
Think about it. It just might be so.
From a devotion originally written for "By the Way"
THE PRAYER: Father, help me to say, "Thy will be done" when I don't understand the difficulties which come to me. Let me know Your hand is a gentle one and Your intentions are always good. In Jesus' Name I ask for this wisdom. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries