Ambushed & Amputated – Will You Survive The Pruning Season?

Are you currently facing a season of pruning?

So many are in the midst of heart wrenching ambushes, amputations, and heartaches, caused by problems in our world. I

There is a new phrase regarding a sign of this season which is flooding our headlines. They are calling it THE GREAT RESIGNATION.

People are resigning left and right from their jobs, their organizations, churches and platforms. Drug and alcohol addiction, suicide and homelessness are at an all time high all over the world.

Jesus said, Fear not, for I have overcome the world and all of these things.

We must press onward, looking upward, if we are to survive and overcome the many seasons of pruning that God initiates and allows in our lives.

The “seemingly” lack of abundance, pain and suffering in our lives is not an indicator God has abandoned us.

Sometimes God allows us to be set up for some ambushes and amputations. They are necessary for us to bear fruit for His divine purposes.

Many times I’ve arrogantly proclaimed to myself or to my foes, “If God is for me, who can be against me?” Then, found myself running for a place to hide when the battle got intense.

Confusion may cause us to question if our pruning is from God, my own doing, or the devils?

Perhaps cuts are made amputating friends, family members, hopes and dreams you have had for years. Please don’t turn and run into the ambush of loneliness, fear, doubt or unbelief. Run to Jesus instead, He will bring you through.

The Apostle Paul writes. “The very things I want to do I can’t do. The things I don’t want to do, I do in vainglory.

When my pride says, God would not allow this, The Holy Spirit speaks softly to me through a familiar verse, “But who can know or understand the mind of God?” 1Co 2:16 

“The same miseries send some to heaven and others to hell. The test of suffering separates the wheat from the chaff in the Church of God: those who in times of tribulation humble themselves to the will of God are wheat for paradise; those who grow haughty and enraged, and so forsake God, are chaff for hell.” (p. 49).

St. Alphonsus Ligouri, The Practice of the Love of Jesus

Tamar ~ Woman Behind the Veil… Ambushed, Broken & Amputated for the Lion of Judah

Genesis 38 shares the story about Judah and his daughter in law Tamar who was married to two of his sons.

“Judah got a wife for Er, his firstborn, and her name was Tamar. But Er, Judah’s firstborn, was wicked in the LORD’s sight; so the LORD put him to death. 

Then Judah said to Onan, “Sleep with your brother’s wife and fulfill your duty to her as a brother-in-law to raise up offspring for your brother.” But Onan knew that the child would not be his; so whenever he slept with his brother’s wife, he spilled his semen on the ground to keep from providing offspring for his brother. What he did was wicked in the LORD’s sight; so the LORD put him to death also. Genesis 38:6-10

Tamar was grieved. Two marriages, no children and it became obvious Judah’s third son was not going to become her husband.

Her father in law Judah had finished grieving over the loss of his wife and decided to go to Timnah to get some of his sheep sheared. Timnah means forbidding.

Tamar heard that Judah was on the way to this city. Broken and hurt she had not been given in marriage to the third and youngest brother she pursued a plan to preserve her family line by disguising herself as a prostitute and ambushing Judah on the road. She waited for him and lured Judah to sleep with her.

When Judah saw her he thought her to be a harlot, for she had covered her face. He went over to her at the road side, and said, “Come, let me come in to you,” for he did not know that she was his daughter-in-law.

Genesis 38:15

Judah was told 3 months later that his daughter in law Tamar was pregnant. When he heard this he immediately demanded she be put to death by fire. Fortunately Tamar had a proof of life for her baby.

Photo by Marcos Flores on Pexels.com

As she was being brought out, she sent word to her father-in-law, “By the man to whom these belong, I am with child.” And she said, “Mark, I pray you, whose these are, the signet and the cord and the staff.”

Genesis 38:25
PROOF OF LIFE
Judah’s seal may have been a cylinder seal similar to clay seals found in a number of archaeological excavations, particularly in the Mesopotamian area.

Judah repented as he recognized signet, cord and staff. These were the articles he had put down as a guarantee for payment to the prostitute he had slept with. He said,

She is more righteous than I, since I wouldn’t give her to my son Shelah.” And he did not sleep with her again. 27 When the time came for her to give birth, there were twin boys in her womb. 28 As she was giving birth, one of them put out his hand; so the midwife took a scarlet thread and tied it on his wrist and said, “This one came out first.” 29 But when he drew back his hand, his brother came out, and she said, “So this is how you have broken out!” And he was named Perez. 30 Then his brother, who had the scarlet thread on his wrist, came out. And he was named Zerah. Genesis 26-30

Tamar’s sons were called Perez and Zerah. Perez would begin the lineage for Salmon who would marry survivor Rahab, who once was a Canaanite prostitute, along with Moabites’s Ruth who married Boaz also from the lineage of Perez son of Tamar. Joseph, the stepfather of Jesus is also from this lineage.

Genealogy of King David and Solomon, and of Yeshua (Jesus of Nazareth); Tamar was one of the foremothers of both these leaders

Tamar’s actions were certainly unorthodox by even today’s standards. The amputations in her life, caused her to ambush her own father in law. God used this season of pruning to bring forth the lineage of Yeshua (Jesus).

Allen Hood from IPOKC poses one answer,
How do you recognize if you are in a season of pruning?

Have you ever wondered how to know if you are in a season of pruning? Many times in our various trials, we find ourselves confused whether our circumstances are the result of the devil’s rage, our own sin, the community’s compromise, or God’s sovereign orchestration. In the face of great trial, we often fail to know whether to rebuke the enemy, repent of sin, confront the community, surrender to God’s molding process, or all of the above. However, just as no one wonders whether or not a vine or tree has been pruned, seasons of pruning are easily discernible.

The primary indicator for a season of pruning is the suffering of loss. A season of pruning brings a loss of finances, possessions, impact, influence, position, stature, relationship, or opportunity. To be pruned is to lose the basis upon which everyone around you measures you as successful. Various trials diminish resources and make secondary and less important pursuits impossible.

Allen Hood, IPOKC

God chose Judah and his descendants for a special place in His plan through the ages. The prophecy God gave to Jacob at the end of his life concerning his sons’ descendants “in the latter days” reveals a special blessing for the tribe of Judah (Genesis 49:1, 8-10).

The blessing of Jesus continues today as well as the blessing of being pruned continues today.

In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.

I Peter 1:6-9

Perhaps you are in a season of pruning, if so, it will only last for a little while. If we can see that we are called to be like Judah even in the midst of our mistakes, misfortunes, misshapen or malformed lives.

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser,” he tells his disciples in John 15. “I am the vine, you are the branches.”— He “cleans” the branches by pruning away all but a few shoots, so the energy can go into making fruit (see vss. 2-3).

As we enter this season of intercession, thanksgiving, and harvest I pray the LORD will show you the width and depth of His wonderous love!

You are one of God’s Treasures!

Marlene

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