John 15:2 NIV
The Bible Says... “He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.”
Just a Dash
Last summer, our peach tree didn’t produce as many peaches as it had in the past, but none of them were the quality we had been used to seeing. We’d even left them on the tree longer to see if they would get any bigger. The peaches that were large enough to even try to do anything with were full of worms. We weren’t able to use any of the peaches and my brother suggested that we prune the tree so we wouldn’t have the same problem the following year.
When pruning a fruit-bearing tree, you remove the branches that aren’t producing any fruit so that the branches that are producing fruit have access to more nutrients from the tree.
Have you been feeling that you haven’t been producing much fruit lately? Maybe the little fruit you have been producing just hasn’t been as good as what you’re accustomed to. If that’s the case, it could be time for some spiritual pruning.
If you remember Dash 003, for a living thing to bear fruit is evidence that it is connected to a living vine. In the same way, the fruit we bear is evidence that we are connected to Christ. If there is anything preventing us from bearing fruit, we should cut it off. That may be friends, outside influences such as TV or social media, or even habits that pull us away from living for Christ or making time for him in our lives. Many people accomplish this “spiritual pruning” by fasting and praying. This can also be accomplished simply by saying no to those things that keep us from being more like Christ.
Just like gardeners and farmers prune their plants, Jesus reminds us in John 15:2 that God will cut off anyone who is connected to Christ, but not bearing fruit. This scripture is also a reminder that simply being connected to (or having a relationship with) Christ is not enough. In order to “abide in the vine” we must also be producing fruit. We have to contribute to the vine.
In recent months, I hadn’t been producing any fruit, and it was because I was not connected to Christ. Once I reconnected with my Savior, the fruit didn’t come back instantly. I had to be pruned. I made an effort to “cut off” things that were preventing me from being fruitful, such as music that didn’t put me in a spirit of worship, TV and movies that took my time and focus from building my relationship with Christ, and even people who weren’t contributing to my spiritual growth (picture someone pulling the fruit from your branches just to toss it to the ground). Once I “cut off” these dead branches in my life, I was able to produce more fruit in the form of content for Dash of Salt Ministry and even praise and worship that was more intentional.
A Pinch More
Identify the areas of your life that may need some pruning? Are there any people, habits, behaviors or influences that you need to “cut off”? Choose one (or several) things to cut off this week and see how it impacts the fruit you produce.
Origin Date: 28 Jan 2019