Standing Firm Mens Devotional

Are you standing for the restoration of your marriage? A daily devotional that will offer encouragement from God’s Word as you stand for the restoration of your marriage.

Pruning Is Necessary for Growth

The views expressed below are those of the writer and may not reflect the views of Rejoice Marriage Ministries or the Steinkamps.

Men, has the Lord placed a devotional on your heart that you would like to share with other standers?

I love to prune and nurture trees. I learned pruning from my Dad. As a young boy, I would watch my Dad spend countless hours manicuring the trees and shrubs in our yard. I also remember my Mom bending my Dad’s ear many times over what appeared to be an overly zealous pruning, “It looks like a stick, Ralph!” But my Dad knew that in order for a tree to grow big and strong, it must be pruned. Pruning promotes proper growth and health.

My neighborhood was typical of many neighborhoods in the post-World War II era. Soldiers were coming home from war, marrying and having children. These growing families needed homes. In our new subdivision, every home had a three-foot tall pin oak planted in the front yard. Most people just left these tiny trees grow at will. Not my Dad! Much to my Mom’s chagrin, he pruned away half of the bottom branches. He said that in order for the oak to grow tall and strong, the pruning was necessary. My parents lived in that house for more than 40 years and they had the most magnificent pin oak in the entire neighborhood.

So it is with our spiritual lives. Our Heavenly Father knows what is good for us. He prunes away the things that hinder our proper growth and health. At the time, pruning is painful but in the long term it produces a magnificent specimen, healthy and strong.

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”  John 15:1-8 

In the first few years after my divorce, God pruned many areas that were stifling and distorting my spiritual growth. He had to cut away my self-sufficiency, the need to be in control of every situation, my anger and bitterness. Pruning was a painful process, but it was necessary for my spiritual growth. In due time, God’s pruning led to a growth in faith, trust and reliance on Him. My anger and bitterness was replaced with love and joy. I became a new man, healthy and strong in the faith. I became a magnificent specimen that could be used by God to bring about the healing He desired for our home and marriage.

You must allow God to prune the oppressive relationships, habits, thoughts, and desires out of your life. By allowing God to prune the dead branches out of your life, you will grow stronger and bear more fruit for His Kingdom. Your fruit will grow in quantity as well as quality. Your fruit will be pleasing to God. Submit to God’s pruning, trusting that He knows what it best for you.

Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.  Psalm 139:23-24 

God allowed my marriage to fail so that He could begin to prune me. It was a necessary part of my spiritual growth. The richest, fullest and most fruitful lives are those that have been strengthened through the painful process of suffering. God could not use me until He cut away all that hindered my spiritual life. The tragedy of divorce was a blessing in disguise. God used divorce as the opportunity to shape me into the man that He wanted me to be.

I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws…I will increase the fruit of the trees and the crops of the field, so that you will no longer suffer disgrace.  Ezekiel 36:25-27, 30 

Your marriage and family have been torn from you. Your hopes and dreams have been crushed. Ask God for the ability to see your problems as He sees them. Trust that even in your painful situation, He will do what is best. He will prune all the dead wood in your life and cause you to grow strong and healthy in the Lord. He will place His Spirit within you. He will lift you up and make you whole. Give Him everything in your life, your hopes, your dreams and your sorrows. He will bring about a bountiful harvest if you submit to His loving care.

You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.  Genesis 50:20 

God bless you my brother in faith,

Dennis Wingfield


Want to receive the Standing Firm Men’s devotional right to your inbox? Subscribe below!
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Get Charlyne’s Free Teaching:

The Path To Marriage Restoration​

This teaching is Charlyne’s introduction to “How To Stand & Fight For Your Marriage!” Charlyne’s goal is to teach you, a stander, or someone you know with marriage problems, the path to marriage restoration that she has learned over the past twenty-five years.