Pruning is an age old practice when a branch or tree is cut back at the end of a season so that it may produce more branches or fruit in the next or future seasons. Although this is a practice done on trees and bushes, groups and teams make the same kind of decisions for the future of their programs.
It’s tough as a leader to make cuts but pro teams do it all the time in order to have the very best team and opportunities to win. Should we do any less? Of course the Church is not a pro team and Christ wants us to operate and treat people differently. Yet the principle of pruning is a valuable practice.
Jesus often spoke about people not using their gifts or talents entrusted to them and then they lost their chances (Matthew 25:14-30). Cultivating the gifts given and taking the opportunities afforded to each of us is what God desires. He wants us to use our abilities to be fruitful for His Kingdom. The question we all must ask is: am I bearing His fruit?
The idea behind pruning a tree or bush is that as leaders we have to determine what branches are not producing good fruit. It’s easy to see branches that bear no fruit! Even if the branch has some fruit, would cutting it back allow it to produce more in the future? As a leader, gardener, that is a call you have to make.
What kind of fruit are you bearing?
What must be pruned?
Is there an area I am not producing the fruit that is pleasing to God?
Are you in the right role? Would you do better in another position?
As a leader what changes do you need to make for the team to produce the most fruit?