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Naked, the trees stretch toward a merciless winter sky; not even a blanket of snow for warmth. Outside my window, they are big, gray skeletons, their bones rattling in the wind. They look lonely-forsaken by God. One is missing a limb and the large trunk with its deep roots seems too big for the remaining branches. The missing limb had once been adorned with handsome foliage and delicate blossoms. It provided luxuriant shade for a family picnic and a solid anchor for a child’s swing. Made fruitful by the moisture from a rich soil and from the root which carried life-giving sap, it had been glorious. But was not able to stay connected.
But somehow, the missing limb became insufficient and barren. Perhaps no one pruned the tree and the limb eventually became diseased and threatened the other branches. However it became unfruitful, its doom was to be severed.
As Christians, we are called upon to “keep ourselves in the Lord” if we want to be fruitful. We may think we have no talent for serving the Lord, or we simply do not know how. But our worth and value are in Him. If His words are in us, if we are connected to Him, we have only to ask and He will give us the power and desire to do His will.
“If you are in me at all times, and my words are in you, then anything for which you make a request will be done for you.” (John 15:7)
There are those who are content with “just scraping by” as a Christian. One woman I know told me she would be satisfied to live in a small corner of Heaven in a shack like in the song, “Just Give Me a Cabin in the Corner of Glory Land”.
Would she, or any of us, look into the face of our Savior and say, “No, I don’t care to serve You, so just give me the smallest cabin you have and I’ll be fine”? Surely, we would rather have the finest, which God has prepared for us.
“In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you”. (John 14: 2)
So we should be grateful to God for continually pruning the diseased parts of our lives so we can stay rooted in Him. We don’t want to be like the severed limb on the tree in my yard…cut off from the source that makes it alive, viable and serviceable…detached from the giver of life and thrown into the fire. I for one, will not be satisfied with a cabin in the corner! I want all that God has for me here on earth, and in Heaven, I want a mansion. A gold one, that’s silver-lined!
“I’ve got a mansion just over the hilltop, In that bright land where we’ll never grow old. And someday yonder, we will never more wander, but walk on streets that are purest gold.”