So. I went on retreat over the weekend, and while I was gone, Pete was at a loose end. He had the perfect opportunity to do some "pruning," and he grabbed it. Those of you who know us, know that I tend to "lose it" when he prunes. He is always heavy-handed with the shears. Ironically enough, this time I didn't even notice his handiwork until Tuesday. wow.
This is one of the bushes that he didn't get to.
I would agree, it needs pruning. It's got some limbs reaching out-of-bounds, causing the bush to lose its bush shape. But my idea of pruning is to cut as little as possible. Pete's is not.
We were both outside when I said, "hmmm, looks like you did some pruning..." He reddened and said, "You know it will grow back!!!" Yes, I do know that it will grow back...in 6 months to a year. I just really like having a living barrier between our house and the neighbors. Right now it looks like sticks in the ground. It's not pruned to grow to any particular shape, it's just cut back. period.
How glad I am that our Heavenly Father takes His time when He prunes us! He doesn't look at His watch and think, "I've got 2 hours, let's get it done!" Instead, He looks at us carefully, examining which branches to encourage and which to remove. The process can be painful. It can hurt. But we are being formed and shaped, into His image. He will lovingly nurture and restore that which He has allowed us to retain. In the end, we will be more firmly rooted in Him, and become more fruitful than we ever imagined possible. John 15.
And that's what I'm thinking about today...