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Cutting Off Unfruitful Branches in Our Lives

John 15:1-2

“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 bears fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.”


These words of our Lord Jesus teach us the importance of spiritual growth and fruitfulness in our lives. As Christians, we are called to be fruitful, to bear the fruits of the Spirit, which are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23). We cannot bear these fruits on our own, but only through our union with Christ, the true vine.

When we talk about cutting off unfruitful branches, we are referring to those aspects of our lives that are not in line with God's will and purpose for us. These could be habits, relationships, or attitudes, that hinder our spiritual growth & prevent us from bearing the fruits of the Spirit.


Recognise unfruitful branches

The first step in cutting off unfruitful branches is to recognise them. We need to examine our lives prayerfully and honestly, asking the Holy Spirit to reveal to us those areas that are not pleasing to God. This may not be a simple process, as it requires humility and a willingness to admit our shortcomings, but is necessary in our journey towards spiritual growth and fruitfulness.


Repent and turn from them

Once we have recognised the unfruitful branches in our lives, the next step is to repent and turn away from them. Repentance means acknowledging our sins, confessing them to God, and asking for His forgiveness. It also involves a change of heart and a commitment to turn away from our sinful ways and follow Christ wholeheartedly. As the Apostle Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 7:10, "Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death."


Rely on God's grace and power

Cutting off unfruitful branches is not something we can do on our own strength. We need the grace and power of God to help us overcome our sinful habits and tendencies. Jesus said in John 15:5, "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." We must learn to abide in Christ, drawing our strength and nourishment from Him, and allowing His Spirit to work in us and through us.

As we take these steps, we can be confident that God will honour our efforts and enable us to bear much fruit for His glory. The Apostle Paul reminds us in Philippians 1:6, "being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."

Beloved, let us be encouraged by these words and commit ourselves to cutting off unfruitful branches in our lives. May we be diligent in examining our hearts, quick to repent of our sins, and reliant on God's grace and power to transform us into the image of His Son. And as we do so, may we experience the joy and fulfilment that comes from living a fruitful life in Christ.


Heavenly Father, we thank You for Your love and grace that call us to be fruitful in our lives. There are unfruitful branches in our lives that need to be cut off. Help us recognise them, repent of our sins, and rely on Your grace and power to overcome them. May we abide in Christ, the true vine, and bear much fruit for Your glory. In Jesus' name. Amen.