top of page

Kerry Lytle

February 24, 2024

John 15:1-4, New Living Translation

"I am the grapevine and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn't produce fruit, and He prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more," You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.”

Just like trees need pruning from time to time to remove dead branches or areas where there is overgrowth, you and I need to be pruned or reshaped at different times in different areas of our lives.


In John 15:2 (AMP), “Jesus says, ‘Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that continues to bear fruit, He [repeatedly] prunes, so that it will bear more fruit [even richer and finer fruit]’”.


Pruning is so important for us to grow in our walk with God. I think it’s helpful to evaluate our lives periodically, and to ask God to show us if there are things that need to be cut off because they are hindering our relationship with Him.


Ask yourself: Am I dragging around “dead branches” in my life? Maybe it’s a bad relationship, an old wound from your past, a negative attitude that keeps you from enjoying life to the fullest, or anything you look to for a sense of security other than God Himself.


It would be nice if we could see what God sees and say, “Yes, God. Let’s get rid of that dead branch.” But many times, we are too afraid to give up what we know, what’s familiar, for something new that we just can’t see or understand.  


The truth is you can be miserable dragging those dead things around or you can go through the pain of letting God “prune” them away. Even though it’s uncomfortable, the best thing you can do is let God prune you, because after the hard part is over, you will see some amazing results!


God loves us so much. He wants to do great things in us and through us. He wants to teach and train us to be kind and gentle, peaceful and patient, loving and forgiving like Him. But we can’t develop that “fruit” on our own, we need a master Gardener.


Jesus says, Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.


In other words, we need to spend time with God.


Our relationship with God is about much more than going to church on Sunday and reading the Word as a religious duty. He wants a close, personal, intimate relationship with each of us.


When we stay connected to God through meaningful Bible study and prayer, we are abiding in Jesus. God wants us to be so rooted and grounded in His love that nothing can shake us—so we are able to bear good fruit in even the hardest, most difficult seasons of life.


Let this be your prayer today: “God, I am tired of dragging these dead branches and overgrowth around with me. I am ready to let it go so I can get on with my life and experience a closer relationship with You. Help me to remember that whatever You tell me to do, You will give me the ability to do it, and You always love me and have my best interest at heart. Help me to trust You when Your pruning is hard and uncomfortable. I trust You, Lord, to work everything out for my good.”


If we totally give ourselves to God, He will give us His best for us. It may not be what we thought we wanted, but it will be exactly what we need. And it will be greater than anything we could have asked for! The garden in our hearts and spirits will flourish like we never thought they could!

bottom of page