The Father’s Pruning Shears – Paul M. Williams
On a traditional vine that has been trained, there is a main with thick horizontal branches coming off from the trunk. All along the branches, at regular intervals are knuckles (spurs), out of which grow pencil-like stems called canes. It is on these canes that the grapes will grow; however, grapes will only grow on canes that are one year old which means there is a need for pruning every single season to remove the old wood. It’s been said that grapevines are probably pruned more extensively and more aggressively than any other crop. When farmers prune, they remove the majority of wood produced the previous season – up to 90 percent is pruned away!! Last year’s season of fresh long canes (of many feet) will be trimmed right back to several inches and the older canes bearing the fruit which grew the season before that (i.e. those that are now two years old) are completely removed from the branch! As one walked by at pruning season, the untrained eye would think that a massacre had taken place! Heaps of old cane lies strewn along the floor in mounts and the poor plant looks barren — from a distance, all one can see is a trunk and branches! Yet to the trained eye, the job has been well-done in order that the branches might go on to bring forth more fruit!!
Jesus said that He is the True Vine, we are the branches and His Father is the husbandman. Without the Father’s pruning in our lives, (the trials and afflictions that He allows to come upon us), we would reach a ceiling in our spiritual lives. It is not the Father’s will that we should be diminished in fruit and so He prunes us that we might bear more fruit!!