15 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitful. 3 You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, and I will 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 don’t know much about gardening, but I watched recently as my landlord trimmed his bushes WAY back. January is a great month to do that. Come spring those bushes will look much better for the effort. January is also a great month to trim back our hectic lives. Author Bob Merritt comments:
“Every year our lives grow new “activity” branches without our intending it. We grow new meetings, commitments, classes, parties, dinners, concerts, friendships, and sporting events that overcrowd and choke our lives. We hang on to these things even though they have no value. What’s needed is a good pruning. We need to cut off the dead weight so that the light can come through and cause new growth.”
Take this first month of the year to evaluate how 2012 worked out. Still gasping for breath? Why not try a different pace these 12 months? Lord… pass me those sheers!