Recognize When God is Pruning People From Your Life
God is Pruning People From Your Life
Have you ever noticed seasons where people seem to fall off from your life? Maybe sometimes something you didn’t understand happened that broke off what seemed to be a valuable friendship. Did you ever pause to think this is God pruning people from your life? Not everyone can go where God is taking you next and some people may have been holding you back from being where God needs you.
Accept when God moves people out of your life.
It can be hard losing people, but sometimes it is for the best. As we age and mature we may even be able to see this years later the reasons this person truly wasn’t good for our journey of growth with God. We need to come to a place of acceptance when God moves people out of our life. If God moves someone out of our life we do not need to chase them down to keep them in our life. This often results in heartache and hurt that God didn’t intend us to go through.
Don’t chase people that God took out of your life.
I feel hurt and chaos can be a great indicator if you are wondering if God moved someone out of your life. We in the flesh get comfortable having certain people around. Once we are so used to having them around no matter how many times God tries to move them out of our life we keep chasing them down because we are comfortable having them around. Continuing to bring these people back in our life that God didn’t intend to be in our life leads to destruction.
Some people were never meant to be in your life.
Over the years, God has supernaturally moved people out of my life. There were many times I pursued keeping these people in my life, and it never ended well. Now that I have spiritually matured, I realize that God never intended some of those people to ever be in my life, and others were only meant to be in my life for a season and no more.
God’s Will. Not our will.
It may seem painful at the moment to let some people go that God is moving out of your life, but you can bet if God intends for them to be in your life He will bring them back into your life at the right time. Too often, I see people mistake their will for God’s will. They read into signs and think it’s God giving them a sign. This is where there needs to be discernment. Referencing back to the Bible and going to God in prayer is the best thing you can do in these times.
Pray for Discernment
Pray for discernment so you can discern in the spirit if it’s your will, or God’s. God is never going to put you around people who are going to take you to a bad place. He’s not going to bring the same person in and out of your life to cause you pain. Too often it’s us that will think, this person reached out that must be God moving them back in my life because this is meant to be. That could just be a message and be as simple as that, or it could be the enemy trying to get that person back in your life because the enemy knows that person kept you distracted.
Tools of the Enemy
Have you ever noticed you will cut this toxic person out of your life and you will start doing better, being happy, getting your peace back, and seeking God, then bam! Out of nowhere, this person seems to pop back up again. That’s not God moving them back in your life, that’s the enemy trying to use another tool to drag you back to where you were before. We simply cannot say everything is the will of God with no discernment. That is dangerous. And God’s will, will never, ever lead or tempt you into sin.
Recognize how those around you affect you.
If you notice you are cursing more when you are around this person, drinking, having bad thoughts, or any other bad things that draw you away from God, this person is doing nothing but dragging you down. And maybe this person can be back in your life once you get to where you need to be with God and are strong, but I doubt once you get to a strong place with God you will want this person back in your life. Often we allow people we would have never allowed in our lives if we were where we needed to be with God in the first place.
Let God be your comfort.
We allow these people into our lives when we are lonely because we were far from God and didn’t have the peace and comfort he gives us. Or, because we make comparisons to others and think this person is this age and has some, or has this many friends, and we feel inadequate so we allow people into our life so we can feel equal to the person we are comparing ourselves to. The Bible talks about how we shouldn’t compare ourselves to others.
Allow God to Prune people out of your life.
This can lead you into a never ending trap of disappointment. Allow God to prune people from your life. And, if you pray for God to prune people out of your life, be ready! It’s not going to feel nice in the flesh, but you have to trust God and stay in His word and allow Him to do His work to move these people out of your life. You may have people in your life that have been holding you back for years and not even realize it.
Do they lead you to God, or further from Him?
A good way to evaluate who God needs to prune from your life is to see what kind of person you are when these people are around you. Do you gossip when they are around? Are you drinking, cursing, not acting like you normally would when they aren’t around? If these people lead you away from God, instead of to God, then you need to pray for God to prune them out of your life. You can bet your life will be so much better and carefree for it too!
Just Me & God.
Life is better with just you and God than you and 10 friends that will take you to hell with them. Only God can give you peace, comfort, eternal life, and salvation. Find yourself a new friend group. Ones that live their life according to God and His word. Some good friends that you can have Bible study and laugh with, not ones that are all too comfortable hanging out at the bar or the club. A good way to think of it is, God could come back at any moment, where do you want to be and who with when God comes back?
Find peace and rest within your soul.
Don’t underestimate the ability of the enemy to use people. Start pruning people from your life and find freedom again. Imagine how much more peaceful your life would be if you had someone praying for you during struggles, instead of sharing toxic gossip, or taking your struggles to gossip to others. Life with God and godly people are peaceful. When you are surrounded by unbelievers, or sinners that aren’t looking to change anytime soon, you are going to stay in a state of chaos and struggle to find peace and rest within your soul.
Pray for God to help you let go.
Pray for God to help you let go of these people as he moves them out of your life. I did this once many years ago. I prayed for God to move all the people out of my life that was dragging me down. Low and behold not even a week later every single one of those people was out of my life one way or another. Rather they had randomly moved, been put in jail, or just seemed to disappear. I couldn’t believe it and knew that could be nothing but God to supernaturally move all of these people out of my life in less than a week.
Keep them out of your life as God intended.
Did these people ever try to work their way back into my life? Of course! But, thankfully by the point they did, I knew good and well God had pruned these people out of my life and that it needed to stay that way. I knew their lifestyles had not changed, and I remembered the chaos and destruction they brought into my life. I made sure to keep them out of my life as God intended. Often, these people like these that were in my life were never supposed to even be there. They were in my life as a result of living a life with sin somewhere in it. God never intended for these people to be a part of my life.
This was one of the prayers I had written in my prayer journal many, many years ago that I recently came across. It’s a beautiful thing to keep a prayer journal as in the next few pages you see my excitement when I realize what God had done. And the fact I had prayed that prayer in passing and moved on. It wasn’t until I went to journal again, I made the connection and realized what happened. My next entry was spent praising God for doing exactly what I had asked him to. Not a single person in my friend circle was left and I couldn’t have been happier for it to just be me and God again.
God never intended for me to save them.
I was so tired of the fake friends and the lifestyle that came with living around ungodly people. My mistake was thinking I could save them when I was nowhere spiritually where I needed to be. So instead, they brought me down with them. It took me a long time to realize God never intended for me to save these people at this point in my life. That these were distractions of the enemy and people the enemy placed in my life to keep me from being where God needed me. This is a prime example of our will instead of God’s will. I cared about these people so I assumed it was my job to fix them, but God was trying to fix me while the enemy kept using them to bring me down.
We absolutely need to witness and spread the gospel with people, but you need to be spiritually sound with God before ever attempting it. And, you need to pray and ensure it’s you that God wants to help this person. Sometimes we may be the person that leads them to church and that’s where our involvement should end. When we try to do things our way without consulting God it can have devastating consequences, and as I mentioned before, the person you are trying to help, there’s a chance they were never even supposed to be in your life and you could be preventing the person God has to help them from doing so.
God’s timing. Not ours.
It’s all about God’s timing, not ours, God’s will, not ours. Don’t try to do something for God without consulting God, or it was never from God. Let God prune people from your life today. Will it hurt? Maybe. Will it save you from much more hurt and pain down the road? Absolutely. If God prunes every person out of your life and you are left with nothing but Him, then you still have all that you need. You have an eternal friend in Jesus.
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Boundaries Updated and Expanded Edition: When to Say Yes, How to Say No To Take Control of Your Life
When to Walk Away Study Guide: Finding Freedom from Toxic People
Live in Grace, Walk in Love: A 365-Day Journey
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