We go through some afflictions in our lives. We are human and it is normal that not everything is perfect.
Even if your neighbor’s grass looks greener, it isn’t. We all go through difficulties.
Highs and lows
“For hardship does not spring from the soil, nor does trouble sprout from the ground. Yet man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upward. “But if I were you, I would appeal to God. I would lay my cause before him.”Job 5:6-8
There are times when difficulties are minor and quickly resolved without headaches. There were times when my family and I were at the best of our lives, spiritually as well as emotionally and financially. Soon after, everything seemed to fall apart. It felt like we were being forcibly pulled out of that quieter moment. And then came the difficulties.
In difficult times, if we don’t focus on God, we may lose a few nights of sleep. In those moments we always questioned ourselves with the title question: “What have I done for God?“.
Do not hinder photosynthesis
You have done nothing for God, for He does not change according to our works, whether they are good or bad.
In some situations you may even have borne fruit. God is not cutting you, He is pruning you.
As we see in John 15, verse 2:
He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitful.
All trees and plants that are not pruned are limited in growth. This is because the dead branches in them can prevent the passage of light, water, air… and this makes it difficult for them to feed, that is, to carry out photosynthesis.
Getting those dead branches off of us can hurt a lot. It is something difficult for us to do alone. Just as someone who knows the subject is needed to prune a plant, we too must be pruned by the One who knows us deeply.
Generate new fruits
“Endure hardship as discipline. God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father?”Hebrews 12:7
If He prunes you, it’s because He wants you to bear more fruit!
As we bear fruit, God wants us to reach new heights with Him. But for that, He needs to clean us and make room for the light of His word to pass through, because the nourishment we need is in His Word. As it is written in Matthew 4:4, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God”.
I’m not saying it’s always like this. There are indeed consequences of our mistakes, which can also take us from a place of calm and lead us to a troubled moment.
But God knows that because we are human, we are susceptible to many mistakes, especially when we haven’t consulted Him before. At times like these, we can also turn to Him, and through this surrender of ours, the Lord can, with grace, use the situation to be pruned and shaped.
Allow yourself to be pruned
He says, ‘Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”Psalm 46:10
Each pruning done has a specific objective. No plant or branch can be taken from the tree without a reason. Otherwise, instead of helping, we can hinder its development.
If we try to prune ourselves, we can end up taking new plants and branches that God wants to use, disturbing His plans in our lives. On the other hand, we may be leaving dead parts that no longer serve us, thinking that God still has a plan for that.
Let Him do it. Present your life to Him. Allow Him to make room for more of His light to enter every detail of your being.