From Charles Spurgeon’s Verse Exposition on Job 19
See the gardener going up to that beautiful tree. He takes out a sharp knife, feels its edge to be sure that it is keen, and then he begins pruning it here, gashing it there, and making it to bleed in another place, as if he were going to cut it all to pieces. Yet all that is not because he has any anger against the tree; but, on the contrary, because he greatly values it, and wishes it to bring forth more fruit than it has ever done. Do not think that God’s sharpest knife means death to His loved ones; it means more life, and a richer, fuller life.
When I think about my trials in this way, I can start to see that what has been taken away from me is the work of the Master Gardener. The energy that previously went into the branches leading to job pursuits has been corralled to keep me healthy enough to take care of my family’s roots. The time that was required to produce trailing vines of activities outside my house is available to nourish the buds of our children as they attempt to blossom into adulthood. Even the loss of ability to spend time with Christian friends to support each other’s growth has resulted in me seeking the Son instead. I am firmly planted with God as my companion.
From “Job Among the Ashes” by Charles Spurgeon
The Lord had taken everything away from Job, and this paved the way to His giving him more of Himself. In the absence of other goods the good God is the better seen.
Having been cut back almost to my trunk, it is difficult to picture what kind of fruit I will bear. However, the Gardener has a skilled hand and supplies me with fertilizer through His Word. I have help from the Holy Spirit as I grow more each season, progressively developing fruit that is sweet with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal. 5:22-23). Hopefully, some seeds will fully develop from this fruit, fall on good soil, and grow.
And He spoke many things to them in parables, saying, “Behold, the sower went out to sow; and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up. Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil. But when the sun had risen, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out. And others fell on the good soil and yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty. He who has ears, let him hear.