Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "Don't Cut off Your Nose to Spite Your Face" (without using the actual phrase or litera (02/14/08)
TITLE: Pruning Time
By Clyde Tew
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The addition onto the breakfast room was Collin’s favorite part of the house. The bank of eight windows was far more than you would call a bay window; it was more of a glass room for viewing the back yard. In the early morning hours Collin liked to sit in the old chairs that belonged to his in-laws before he and Angela had them reupholstered. There in the glow of a single lamp Collin would sip coffee, read his Bible, and meditate on God’s Word to prepare for his day.
As the sun began to rise each day, there was an extra blessing of seeing the sun’s rays bring the roses on the south side of the house to life. The roses were a beautiful combination of orange and pink, though Collin didn’t recall the name of that variety. The bushes grew so large that by the fall of each year they strained with the weight of leaves, buds, and fully opened blossoms so that they blocked the view out of the windows on that side and restricted the natural light from entering.
Occasionally Angela would say to Collin, “We need to trim the roses. They’re darkening the room”. Collin always answered, “I’ll get to it real soon”, though he had no intention of cutting them except at the proper time to prune in February. The stalks of the mature bushes were over two inches in diameter and had to be cut with a saw at pruning time, but Collin always pruned them back to four or five shoots about ten inches or so tall.
As he cut off several pretty blossoms and buds, his youngest, Jane, would ask “Do we not like roses anymore?
He would instruct her as he pruned, “Even though I may cut off pretty flowers, the bush has to be pruned each year. Pruning is about building better roots, and better roots yield better fruit”. Collin went on to tell the kids, “It’s like when God lets us go through a tough trial. He wants to makes us stronger to handle our next assignment”.
So year after year the roses grew and were pruned. And year after year, Collin grew spiritually as God pruned him. But he always recognized there was an appointed time for pruning and he never cut off a rose just to brighten the place.
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