“I am the true vine and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.” John 15: 1 – 2 (NKJV)
You’re a tree with beautiful, green branches bearing fruit and then an old, dried out branch begins to shoot out. It bears no fruit, growing steadily until it begins to affect fruits on other branches, causing them to wither albeit slowly and unnoticeably.
So God alerts you. How? Your bad branch becomes a lot more evident. You’re almost constantly jealous, or acting in selfishness or lashing out in anger…. The worst part is, you hate it but you can’t seem to do anything about it. You’ve tried though. Oh He knows you’ve tried, He sees you trying till you get frustrated. He waits; your frustration should lead you to the One who can truly help. He waits for you to see the neon signs, acknowledge the problem and ask for His help. The moment you give Him permission to get rid of it, He wastes no time. Reaching for His shears, The Gardener cuts off the dead branch in one swift stroke; then He carefully and lovingly tends to the tree so that it begins to bear even more fruit than it ever did.
I’ve titled this face your ugly because the truth is there’s a lot of ugly in all of us. That’s why Jesus came, the only beautiful one, to make us as beautiful as He is. But from time to time, our ugly nature yearns to rear its head and destroy our beautiful. Thankfully, God is right there, ready to mold us right back into shape again… once we ask Him to. Simply put, your ‘ugly’ is your flesh and the flesh is filled with rubbish! I hate it! But there is a divine solution and so even when ‘ugly’ surfaces, we don’t have to remain ugly for very long.
The truth is some of these ugly traits tend to hide in the dark corners of our hearts so sometimes, you’re unaware of it or you’ve chosen to just ignore it but God who sees your heart in 3D vision and is aware of the plans He has for you knows that it is not okay for these to be present. To be all He will have you be, every trace of ugly must be cleaned out; so He reaches down and brings it to the surface. This is why it begins to strongly manifest in your character and if you’ve been walking in the Spirit, it immediately throws you off balance because you see the ‘ugly’, you become aware that it is there and you can’t seem to shake it. This helplessness then propels you to humbly kneel before God, to tell Him about these issues and ask for His divine help.
There is a relief that comes with asking for God’s help in such matters. You know He has heard, You know He’s going to get right on it and the best part, your heart will be perfectly beautiful again, even more beautiful because God does NOT do anything less than perfect. Your heart knows this so the moment you get on your knees and face your ugly, your Spirit being starts to rejoice. Your heart automatically becomes glad, it knows what has just happened, it’s about to get a makeover! And the Best Best part is that this makeover will be permanent. That particular dead offshoot will never rear its head again. NEVER! Because…? You ask. Well, because God does not need to stitch over and over again, He is not man.. He deals with issues once and for all.
Don’t feel bad, we all have to go through it as God’s children. Don’t ignore it, it won’t disappear but grow even more rapidly. Don’t try to fix it, you’ll get frustrated and end up despising yourself. Instead, face your ugly, tell God about it and let Him do what only He can do. It may be a painful process but you’ll love Him all the more for it when He’s done. It may also occur more than once, for different sides of ugly exist but the Gardner is always present. God also constantly prunes every branch that bears fruit so that it may bear more fruit so rejoice when you see ugly, your level of fruitfulness is about to increase! (John 15:2)
There’s a particular prayer I love on pruning, you can find it here and if you know any books, you may recommend it in the comment box. Have a great week! 🙂
“You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit, fruit that will last…” John 15:16 (NIV)
P.s: I know I’ve been away for a while, I have been undergoing what I refer to as an ‘intense training program’ with the Holy Spirit as ‘Sensei’! (that means teacher in Japanese). I pray He grants me the grace to talk about it here soon enough.