I have an old "moneymaker" pecan tree growing close to my barn. This tree has a 48+ inch diameter, and the limbs spread 30 feet out from it's trunk. Over the years, many pecans have been produced by that old tree (it is close to 80 years old). Once I picked up over 300 pounds from it.
When the wind blows hard, dead branches come crashing to the ground, as the tree whips in the breeze. The main branches of the tree remain strong and stout, and new growth appears. This spring, I gave the old girl 150 pounds of fertilizer, and she greened up, and put on small pecans. Over the summer, I looked at that tree, and estimated she would produce about 150 to 200 pounds of pecans (about average for a tree this size). Boy was I surprised! I have picked up almost 600 pounds from her, and she still has some pecans left in the upper branches.
I know that someone planted that tree years ago in hope that it would bring forth it's fruit (or nuts in this case). Man can plant, but only God can give the increase. As I reflected on the marvelous output of pecans from this old girl, I remembered reading in the Bible how God can multiply. Remember the story of the widow woman and Elijah (1 Kings 17 verses 10-16)? God caused the meal and oil to keep on producing until the rain came. How about Jesus and the five loaves and two fishes (Luke 9 verses 13-18)? He took a little, increased it, and fed a bunch of people.
Yes, the good Lord can multiply and increase so an abundant harvest is produced in our lives. Yet, like the moneymaker pecan tree, we often must be "pruned" by the winds and storms of life.