This is a picture of my bushes before my pruning shears and imagination kicked in gear.... (Kinda what we must look like to the Lord, sometimes, before His pruning hits us.)
This is after an hour's hard and sweaty work... (Imperfect, but when the Lord does His pruning, it's a perfect work with a perfect result.)
This is before picture # 2 of two more of my bushes...
This is after much hard work in the warm sunshine; a labor of love....
When I was out there, I thought of my hard-working husband, who has been working a ton of hours of overtime this week. Though these hearts and X and O are my projects, I did many of his projects while I was out there. A team!
I also thought of the Lord's pruning in us.... Take one look at my bushes that I had neglected since last summer, and you will see what happens when we are left to ourselves! God cares for us, and takes great time with us, pruning us and refining us, to make sure we are shaped into the beautiful image of His Son, Jesus - and not left to grow wild and unruly! Hoooray!!!
And there's one more fun lesson, thanks to the continuous weeds in our veggie garden. It is this: pick them often!! Have you ever seen a veggie garden overtaken with weeds? Not a pretty or fruitful sight!! Weeds that are allowed to grow and grow will soon choke out the veggies' vitality. Same with sin, unforgiveness, bitterness, etc. in a Believer's heart. You get the picture! If not, then quickly grab the shovel of God's word and ask the Spirit to dig up anything growing in your heart that shouldn't be: "Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting" (Psalm 139:23-24)!
Happy pruning and plucking!