So yesterday, at “The Women At The Well” group, we suddenly started having some discussions on stuff God is tugging on some of us to start, ie, businesses, going forth with ideas, etc.
And as we spoke, we not only had ladies belonging to the above criteria, but also those who are currently in the pruning season and so are seemingly doing nothing.
Remember when I wrote about the pruning season HERE before?
I have been in the pruning season for most of this year.
It lasted for months.
Months where I was dry, spiritually tired and weary.
I have had days of moping the floor while feeling useless as people went to work…
I have days of wondering about “what God is doing with my life!”
I have days when I have been so weary, I didn’t even know how to move forward.
I have bled spiritually; died to self over and over again and when it seemed like it was all over, God takes me into an even deeper gear again.
I have been preaching the message about understanding our times and seasons and I believe that this is something we should all aim to do.
When we understand our times and seasons, it takes some of the worries off of us. Then we can move into “Lord, what do you want me to do in this season? What lessons do you want me to learn?”
As against griping and barely surviving through it all.
I am still in the pruning season in a way, I am still in waiting season, albeit a different kind of waiting from the one I have been in the months past.
But I have also graduated from the “feeling useless season”.
That’s when the pruning is at its top gear. It’s not a pretty place to be I assure you.
You are stripped of all you have ever placed your hope in and left with “I am with you” as your only anchor.
God shakes everything you have ever known and takes away everything that can appear to be your source – even your job and means of livelihood.
I have experienced all of these and as our sister at TWTW shared, I thought to share some things that helped me through that time in my life.
(1) I pressed into understanding my time and season.
I have written about this up there.
The Bible says that the sons of Issachar understood the times and seasons.
Today we have too many Christians who do not understand their times and seasons and so try to use another’s time and season to measure themselves.
I almost got into that trap.
I blogged about envy here and how the Spirit had to help me walk out of that trap.
Once I came to the understanding that my walk with God was personal and peculiar, it took some of the angst out of my heart and I could relax in His hands, trusting that He knows what is best for me.
Some days I relaxed just fine, other days I relaxed by crying and asking Him what’s up. But still, there was a peace in my heart when I realized I was in a pruning season and God was working in me
“I am the true grapevine and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit and He prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more.
Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me”
-John 15:1-4 NLT
(2) Understand That God Wants To Be Your ONLY Source In Your Pruning Season
The whole essence of pruning is to trim and cut away unnecessary things from your life, heart, character and attitude.
Things that you have hitherto held on to have to go.
Sometimes God would take it all away so you can be left with ONLY Himself.
You know we sing songs like “I belong to you alone” but in reality we belong to a lot of things.
It is in pruning that God makes those words indeed true in your life.
And in this place He wants the truth that “I am with you” to be enough for you.
And sometimes, in the pruning season, those words “I am with you” are all you have got.
You must understand that “I am with you” has to be worth more than gold to you in this place. God’s aim is that that knowledge should see you through and carry through whatever maybe.
Those words were the only words God told men like Gideon and David and it was enough to carry them into battle and break through barriers and dry wilderness seasons.
“And the angel of the Lord appeared to him and said to him, âThe Lord is with you, O mighty man of valor.â
-Judges 6:12 ESV
(3) Do Not Rebel: Learn The Lessons
Most times, we miss out on what God is doing because our eyes are so focused on ourselves.
This cannot be your response during your pruning season.
You have to deliberately ask God: “Lord what do you want me to learn in this season? What am I meant to do?”
Because except you learn the lessons, there is no moving on from that stage.
You elongate your journey unnecessarily.
In humility, ask the Lord to teach you what He intends for you to learn.
To open the eyes of your understanding so you can see Him clearly through whatever season you are passing through.
“But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.”
-Job 23:10 KJV
(4) Obey The Instructions: Stay Faithful Where He Has Placed You
In this season, you may get instructions from God that seem outrageous.
For example, I got instructions to pray each night by 12am in tongues.
I felt for the longest time that that was my only work.
He said pray, eat the word, pray.
I mean, people are doing things and that’s all He wanted me to do.
So many times I felt like a flop, but still I obeyed.
He said stay faithful where I have placed you, taking care of the sheep and the goats and I obeyed.
I organized “The Women At The Well” April 2016 meet while I was so weary in spirit. I really just wanted to retreat inside and bury myself under a “God why me party”, but He said to take care of the sheep and goats I am in charge of.
He said stay faithful with the blog. I wrote posts when I wanted to do nothing but switch off my phone and withdraw away from the world.
I filmed videos like “Preparation on How to be a wife series” even when I felt like my own promise on marriage was being delayed and God was messing with me.
Essentially, I pushed above “feelings” into obedience.
My brother even had a dream on me staying faithful where God had placed me. It was a serious matter to God.
He said “when I look, let me find you where I have placed you”.
You know David was called out to be anointed as king form the bush.
Imagine if he were somewhere else that day?
In this season you may get instructions that seem like God is placing you in the bush…
You will wonder at how outrageous they seem. No problem. Obey them.
Press past your feelings and take care of whatever sheep and goat God gives to you even if it’s to sit at home and do the home chores.
When He looks, let Him find you there.
“Then Samuel said to Jesse, âAre all your sons here?â And he said, âThere remains yet the youngest, but behold, he is keeping the sheep.â And Samuel said to Jesse, âSend and get him, for we will not sit down till he comes here.â And he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy and had beautiful eyes and was handsome. And the Lord said, âArise, anoint him, for this is he.â Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers. And the Spirit of the Lord rushed upon David from that day forward. And Samuel rose up and went to Ramah.”
-1 Samuel 16:11â-â¬13 ESV
(5) You Must Learn The Art Of Waiting
The world is forever in a rush of “do things, do things”.
But God never rolls in such a way.
God takes His time to build in you the character required for the next level He is taking you too.
Otherwise you will break when you get to the top.
I prayed prayers like “Lord keep me under your mighty hands, don’t release me until I am ready”.
I prayed such prayers while crying because my flesh really wanted breakthroughs but my spirit wanted to be molded first.
And God answered and still answers such prayers by putting me in waiting seasons.
If you must learn the lessons in your pruning season, your spirit must be at rest in your waiting seasons.
Wait and let Him build you up for where He is taking you to.
You can read more on waiting seasons HERE
(6) Learn To Pray Through Especially In Tongues
I have experienced such spiritual weariness this year…the type that makes me dread prayer time.
I have felt so weary in heart and spiritually sick to my bones, to the point that I felt like I have nothing to offer. No rivers of living water flowing out of me.
But in those times, God’s word to me has been to still sit before Him in prayer.
So I have taken my burdens to the Lord at 12am prayer time and a lot of times while praying in tongues, I just begin to cry inexplicably. I don’t know what the Spirit is saying but I cry and cry deeply, it’s as if from my bowels is coming forth such a deep pain that English cannot explain.
And when I am done, the strangest thing happens, I feel such a rest and peace, it’s amazing.
My times of spiritual refreshing have always come through prayer.
Do not run away from prayer time during your pruning season.
Yes, you will feel spiritually dry, as a matter of fact, during pruning seasons, it mostly feels like God is nowhere to be found.
But He is there alright and one way you experience Him is when you draw close to Him in prayer.
Sometimes praying in your understanding doesn’t articulate the words rightly and so the gift of tongues is such a blessing in this season.
Apart from building you up, it refreshes your spirit man and makes you equipped to go forth into one more day.
It gives you strength for tomorrow and pours out your burden in a way that you feel refreshed when you are done.
satan will try to take away your prayer time by giving you “feelings”.
I feel so dry…
I feel so out of touch with God…
Subject those feelings and when your time for prayer rolls around, go sit before the Lord and offer up those feelings to Him in prayer.
I am certain that prayer was the one thing that kept me sane during my pruning season and still keeps me sane in my current waiting season.
I would not have made it otherwise.
God sure knew what He was doing when He gave me that seemingly outrageous instruction to start praying in tongues daily.
You will do better to heed this too. It’s a powerful weapon in your pruning season.
“Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.”
-Romans 8:26â-â¬27 KJV
Lord help me to see you throughout my pruning season.
Let the words from you “I am with you” be enough for me.
Help me not to buckle under your arms but to be in tune with your Spirit.
Through this season, renew me, refresh me, and fill me up afresh with yourself Lord. In Jesus name I have prayed, amen.
There is still so much more I can say on this subject but I am constrained for time and some you have to find out yourself.
Be in tune with God if you are being pruned, more than ever, let God be your sustenance.
If you have any further questions, I will be glad to answer them on the “Reader’s Request” segment of the blog.
Send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or if you simply need a sister to agree with you in prayer or something, also holla.
Will do my best to be there for you by God’s grace.
Love and light,
And if you have ever been in a pruning season or you are currently in one now, please share your lessons/how you were able to live through that season with us in the comment section below.
I am certain that the family of believers can glean wisdom from your words and it would serve to benefit us all.
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Pamela MogekwuOctober 19, 2016 at 3:19 pm
This post is awesome. May God almighty guide you throughout your waiting season.
Frances OkoroOctober 25, 2016 at 4:57 pm
Amen to God guiding us through our waiting season. we need Him to still our hearts and make us stay in our place..
ALLI FEMI EMMANUELOctober 21, 2016 at 4:32 pm
Thank you very much, so much truth said in your write up and anywhere i see truth i see Jesus. More Grace to fulfill purpose in Jesus name
Frances OkoroOctober 25, 2016 at 5:00 pm
Amen and amen Alli. amen!
And welcome to the blog 🙂