July 19, 2022
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 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.”
Do you know God’s purpose in your suffering? If not, God often gives affliction to chastise you of sin, getting rid of bitterness or spiritual laziness. When God puts you in that “furnace of affliction” (as the Bible calls it), then you can say with Job, “When he has tried me I shall come forth as gold.”
But suffering is also a kind of pruning to make you more fruitful. Or your suffering could be God’s way of polishing you, rounding off your rough edges; after all, we are “living stones” being fit for our heavenly temple.
So today, whether your hardship is a chastisement, a pruning, or a polishing, ask yourself: what progress am I making? Am I putting off sin? Is my life being fruitful for the kingdom? Am I growing in good character? There’s a reason for your hardships, friend. Look for that reason and… get growing.
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