Orchard Tree stretched herself in the sunshine. As a junior tree she was doing her most favorite thing—sprouting new shoots. She relished the admiration of Other Trees around her who were jealous of her ability to produce shoots so quickly.
Orchard Tree was fairly quivering with the anticipation of her first fruit-bearing experience. She felt pregnant with potentiality and elated with her creativity. She smiled with pride as she looked over her woody main stem trunk bristling with new shoots going every which way.
Suddenly she heard footsteps approaching. Master Gardener stood before her appraising her upstart, grand production of new shoots.
“Wild growth,” He concluded, “detouring mainline Life and potential fruit. Useless, spurious shoots.”
He took up His nipper-clippers and carefully, not haphazardly, started lopping off certain of her wild shoots, her prized and puffy self-efforts.
Orchard Tree cried in agony to see her precious creativity treated so shamefully. Nursing her wounded ego, she tearfully watched her wild shoots fall and shrivel and die, dismayed to see them go.
“Ouch! What did I do to deserve such rough treatment? Why are you destroying my healthy shoots? They would have become good branches!” she objected.
Tenderly, Master Gardener explained, “If I allowed you to pursue your wild and wayward way, you would end up with a tangled mass of unruly shoots producing meager fruit. Pruning is for good, already flourishing growth, so that more and then much fruit can be produced. When wild shoots are removed, your strength and vigor thus conserved, Life can surge through main-branch buds.”
Even as she tearfully mourned the loss of her zealous creativity, Orchard Tree understood. “Master Gardener, so let it be. I submit to Your elective surgery on me!”
From the RESOURCE BOOK
The Gospel of John, chapter 15.