“No good thing does he withold from those whose walk is blameless.” Psalm 84:11
It is excruciating to stand by helplessly and watch as God casts the beautiful branch of our dreams into the fire. Pain envelops us as we watch our reasons for living turn into an ash heap. Although we’ve been told and maybe assent to it being for our good and his glory (see Romans 8:28), we are prone to doubt God’s wisdom and grow bitter when his plans do not coincide with ours.
How can it be his will to discard our healthy, fruitful branch? In John 15:16, Jesus says, “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit–fruit that will last.” It is possible, and likely, that our branch of dreams was quite fruitful, but God wants us to bear more substantial, juicier, fruit. Sometimes, God deeply wounds us with his pruning sheers so that he can graft in his own (or new) dream for us.
When we abide in Christ, God the Father, our heavenly gardener (John 15:1), will not allow any of the branches he has grafted into us to wither. On the contrary, when he grafts into us the branch of his dreams, his dreams will become our dreams (Psalm 37:4). He will cause the fruit on it to multiply a hundred-fold if we leave it alone and allow him to be the gardener.When the Father joyously prunes our branches, he ensures that they bear fruit. Our fruitfulness brings him glory and demonstrates that we are Christ’s disciples (John 15:8).
Once we’ve mourned the death of our own dreams and sought forgiveness for our unbelief (for calling God’s wisdom into question), he will quiet our souls. We will find satisfaction in his will and finally be able to hear what he has been whispering all along, “I am a sun and a shield, I bestow favor and honor; no good thing will I withold from those whose walk is blameless” (see Psalm 84:11 above). And then he continues whispering, “No eye has seen no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him (I Corinthians 2:9).
As our Father reassures us with his loving words of promise, our belief will take root and our souls will rest, even if we cannot see the tangible results of his gardening. In our rest, we’ll be doing what the Father most longs for us to do–confidently trusting him with our very lives.