A few months ago I received a plant as a gift. It came in one of those plastic pots that you might find in the floral section of your grocery store. They work fine to transport the plant, but they are not a place where it can live and thrive. So I transplanted my plant. I found a ceramic pot in my garage and some compost leftover from last summer, and as carefully as I could I pulled the plant out of the temporary pot and stuck it into the sturdy ceramic pot. I watered it and left it in a nice sunny spot in my living room.
After a week in its new home my plant looked terrible. It was shrunken and withered and some of the branches looked dead. I had done everything right, but the shock of being uprooted and transplanted was a lot for my little plant. I knew those dead branches were hindering its growth so I cut them off, gave my plant some more water, and waited patiently.
Over the course of the next few weeks a couple more branches died and needed to be cut off. But then, the best thing a gardener could wish for happened: new growth started to appear. Tiny green leaves were unfurling and reaching for the sunlight.
I am just an okay gardener. Our Lord is the Master Gardener. His desire for us is that we thrive and bear fruit, and He knows exactly what we do and do not need to make that happen. He tends our souls; He knows when to prune; He sees the dead places in us that need to be cut out. The growing process can be painful, but if we remain in Him, as today’s Gospel beckons us, we can trust that new growth, that sweet fruit, is coming. (John 15:4)
Take a look at your heart, sister. Where are you showing signs of new growth? Where are you in need of some pruning? Trust in the Lord as He tends your heart. Say to Him, “Remain in me Lord, apart from You I can do nothing.”
Anna Coyne is a Saint Paul native, wife, mother, and convert to the Catholic faith. When not chasing after her two young children you can probably find her playing the piano, knitting, tripping over wooden train sets, or writing. Find out more about her here.