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Monday, October 06, 2008

Pruning

Just before my mom visited in August, we attempted some yard spiffing by asking our workers to prune the bushes. In spite of my best communication efforts, the idea of pruning here is pretty extreme. You start with a bush and end with a stick. I suppose people have learned to get away with that because we live in a tropical humidor and everything grows so quickly. God brought the pruning image to my mind yesterday. A year ago our team had 5 families. Today we have 2. We had 8 single people. Today we have 4. We were scrambling to accommodate the influx of new missionaries. Today we have four empty houses. The couple and the single man for whom we've waited are still finishing support raising, and we heard this weekend that we lost a new team member when the Clarks miscarried. We are feeling pruned.
We met for our monthly worship time last night, the first of the post-Masso musical era, our little group of 8 adults and 5 kids, still singing by faith. And we elected to spend an extra hour afterwards in prayer, from John 15. We must trust that this pruning is part of God's overall plan for abundant life, for green leaves and stunning flowers, for fruit that feeds a hungry world. We are entering a season of prayer for vision and planning, culminating in a retreat we have planned for January. Please join us in asking God to bring good out of the painful experience of having our branches cut off. Ask that He would be glorified by the fruit that this smaller team, in weakness, bears.

The bushes by the door that were devastated a month ago are already covered in leaves, and roses are budding out all over the pruned branches. I hope the same may be seen from our ministry by 2009.

1 comment:

larisochka said...

I am praying with you!