Increase Your Bloom Ability: Day 2

Cheri Strange

Increase Your Bloom Ability

Day Two

Show-stopping gorgeous will never be reality for my ugly bushes simply by hoping they will someday bear beautiful roses. It’s going to require time, energy, and nothing short of Divine intervention. Why would we think flourishing spiritually would be any different?

We know from John 15:8 God’s desire is for us to bear fruit. But just how does fruit-bearing work? How do we become more fruitful? In the same passage in which we find His purpose, we find His plan. Through these verses we can discover just how to increase our bloom ability.

I am the True Vine, and My Father is the Vinedresser.

Every branch in me that does not bear fruit [that stops bearing] He takes away (or He cuts away) (trims off, takes away); … John 15:1-2 (Amplified)

Hold on a minute! Before Jesus jumps into our personal fruitfulness, He needs us to understand something about Himself. He introduces Himself as the True Vine. That title is significant because the vine is depicted in the Old Testament as the image of God’s chosen people, Israel. But the vine of Israel failed (Isaiah 5:1) and became and an empty vine (Hos. 10:1). Jesus takes this familiar symbol of intimacy with God, Vinedresser, to introduce Himself as better than chosen Israel because He is the Son. He can be trusted to do what needs to be done to help increase the overall fruitfulness of the vine.

That is the same message He communicates to us today. He is the One who is True. He is out only for our good. And even though you and I might reflect nothing more than a scraggly bunch of sticks with thorns and a few leaves today, He sees what we can become. He can be trusted. This is the great assurance we can have!

increase bloom ability John 15.2

Which is why He can rush in with such a necessary blow in the next phrase for blooming:

Every branch in me that does not bear fruit [that stops bearing] He takes away (or He cuts away) (trims off, takes away); … John 15:1-2 (Amplified)

How do we Increase our Bloom Ability?

We must allow God to cut away what has stopped bearing fruit.

Jesus doesn’t pull any punches here. He gets right down to business. Think about what kinds of areas of life He might be meaning. What could need cutting away?

  • Could you possibly have habits that are not God-honoring, relationships that are harmful, or ministries that are no longer bearing fruit?
  • Could it be a job that you need to leave?
  • Could the need for cutting relate to how you spend your money, or how you spend your time?

This calls for sensitivity to the Lord’s voice, coupled with an understanding that pruning is not punishment. Pruning is for the overall good of the vine. You are so worth the trouble that He is stopping the universe to prune these particular branches in your life!

The reality for most of us is that we need serious pruning. We misuse our time and resources. We squander that which has been entrusted to us. And, if we are honest, there are a lot of things we care about that don’t matter.

What is hanging lifeless on your vine? What is not bearing fruit in your life that needs to go? What is no longer bearing fruit?

May we seek first His kingdom and allow Him access to cut anything and everything away that keeps us from increasing our bloom ability.

Cheri

 

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2 Comments

  1. Cheri Strange

    Wow! This whole series of “bloom-ability” is hitting home with me. I have felt fruitless for some time in the ministries I’ve been entrusted with, a book that I’ve been working on (for the last 3 years) and my prayer life. Why? Because of my ignoring the voice of the Holy Spirit to shut down Facebook for a time, silly to some, but for me it was my idol. Like with any idol, you will not bear fruit!

    So, shut down started on June 1st and will last for 30 day or maybe beyond, we’ll see. There may be more pruning then I think…ouch!

    1. Cheri Strange

      Tammy,
      Oh my goodness! I just saw your comments! I apologize for the delay in responding! I completely understand. This is where most of my material originates. Straight out of my experiences with God in His Word. I think your battle with Facebook is something lots of women face. It’s not silly. We hold it in our hands and carry it everywhere. When this thing crosses over and becomes master over a part of our lives — it must be cut off. Recognizing those things that are standing in the way of our fruitfulness is exactly what Jesus is pointing us toward. I pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to illuminate in you what He wants cut off — in order to make room for more fruit. I know it won’t be pain-free. And for that, I am sorry. But it won’t keep me from praying, especially these next 30 days. His plan is better.

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