It's all God.
I was reminded of this simple and comforting fact while reading Hosea 14 and the commentary in Look Unto Me.
My ability to be a healthy and fruitful child of God is not due to my striving and straining. It's instead a "direct result of my union with God" writes Spurgeon. And so it is. "From me [God] comes your fruit" says Hosea 14:8.
It's God who gives the fruitfulness and growth.
But the pruning in my life is a direct result of my union with God too. Just as I trim the dead branches off of my rose bush, God prunes sin and unfruitfulness out of my life.
It's God who selects what needs to be pruned.
I like the sound of fruitfulness and growth. I don't like the sound of pruning. But pruning is necessary in order to flourish.
And so I yield.
Or at least I should yield. God's sovereignty over my growth and pruning doesn't mean that my actions don't matter. They do. However, the most important action is yielding to God's work in my life. But I often want to fight being pruned, it hurts. However, I'm reminded today that God is the Master Gardener. He knows what He is doing. And if I want to be a healthy flourishing child of God I will realize it is good for me to yield to His gentle hand.
Even if they hold a pruning knife.
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit (John 15:1-2 ESV).