One of the challenges of pastoring a rural church is keeping the large yard of over 7 acres looking good. Spring temperatures and plenty of rain means the grass grows quickly every week. For years, Johnny Edwards sacrificed 5-7 hours a week to keep the place looking immaculate. Changes in his life have kept him from being able to continue this ministry but all of his efforts through the years is greatly appreciated.
While mowing the other day, it struck me that when we mow we are fulfilling a function that allows the grass to grow healthier and establish deeper roots while looking better. We are actually “pruning” the grass. An unmowed area gets weedy, looks shabby, and becomes unhealthy even housing vermin.
John’s gospel chapter 15 verses 1-2 say, ““I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2He 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.”
God loves us so much that He cuts back in our lives the things that will eventually make us unhealthy. Eliminating the extras, the pruning allows us to get deeper roots as we go to His Word and seek Him more. It drives the vermin from our lives and allows us to be seen as His beautiful creation.
During this pandemic time are you allowing your spiritual life to grow and be cultivated, pruned and fruitful? I often am told “I just don’t have the time for personal time with God.” So what is stopping you now that you have so much time? In the weeks left find time to engage with God’s Word and in prayer. Include listening in the prayer time as well as talking. Set up a daily routine where you include devotions. Take this pruning time to heart and allow God to work in your life so you come out stronger.
His plan is for us to be even more fruitful! Allow the Holy Spirit to lead you during this time to share your faith. You might share with neighbors, family, or whomever the Holy Spirit leads you to during this time. I’ve even seen people put their testimony on Facebook and Instagram. Find your way of sharing faith so you can be even more fruitful. Reach out to those in need and searching for peace in this unsettling time.
Now back to the unspiritual task of weed eating…