God Is About a Work of Renewal

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit.”

John 15:1-3

When God said that renewal would be our theme for 2024, I was excited. Making things new, YES, Lord! I did not really stop to consider how newness occurs. Making things new takes change, and change is often hard and painful for people who like stability and comfort. Renewal often comes through pruning, and that cutting is also something that invokes pain.

I always thought of pruning as cutting away areas that are no longer fruitful, of being stripped down. But the Spirit has been inviting me to view pruning in a new way. To consider the necessity of pruning to bear more fruit as evidenced from the Scriptures and throughout our lives.

Moving into this year of renewal, I had no idea that the Lord would begin pruning so early. But from the start of 2024, it became evident that change was underfoot. There are things God has been asking me to let go of in order to make space for more of what He wants.

In terms of our team, the Spirit was calling some teammates onward while calling other new members into the fold. As the Lord revealed He was placing different callings on hearts, we said goodbye to Alyssa while witnessing that God had already orchestrated her transition long before, entrusting her social media work to Tati, a teammate she had been working with on social media for many months prior. And we said hello to Stacey, who God has been calling forward to write and share the deep work of healing and restoration He has been about in her life.

Amidst everything, it was Lent again, and despite already having a plan for our Lent content, God called me to another renewal—to renew the Marian Consecration I had made as a college student in the 90s. Mary did not want me to do it alone, though, and so I invited others to join me. Even though some of us may have resisted at bit first (see: Why I Didn’t Want to Do the Marian Consecration), we set out in faith as a group, with me leading the prayers live daily on YouTube and creating a playlist so that others can follow along for their own Marian Consecration at any time. What a time of grace and blessing, and I can’t wait to share more about that soon.

That time with Our Lady has begun to bear fruit in areas God has been preparing for many years. Mother Mary has been on the move with my infertility book that I’ve been writing for the past several years. I’m excited and hopeful about where she is leading, and in due season, I look forward to sharing more with you about that. In fact, if you haven’t already, please subscribe to our email list, as  that is where we keep our community updated on all the latest happenings around here. In the meantime, I humbly ask for your prayers concerning this effort.

During this season, it’s been evident that God has been moving deeply in our editor Caitlyn’s life. Since the time we began discussing her taking on the role of editor in August of 2021, I knew that she was discerning consecrated life. It’s been a blessing to accompany her in this crucial time of life where she has moved from discernment into a time of formation with her diocese to pursue the vocation of consecrated virginity. As she moves deeper into that call, she is now moving on from Little With Great Love (I’ll See You in the Eucharist), with grace, blessing, and all our love and prayers.

The Spirit has been asking us to discern the renewal that He wants to do within us and Little With Great Love, and we’ve been responding with a desire to be childlike and trusting in His plan.

lisa martinez

I’ve been seeking the Lord about next steps. We’ve been in prayer and discussions as a team, and I’ve also been doing the same with other women passionate about storytelling and restoring hearts. The Spirit has been asking us to discern the renewal that He wants to do within us and Little With Great Love, and we’ve been responding with a desire to be childlike and trusting in His plan. Some days that’s peaceful and easy, and other days it involves facing spiritual attack or battling a desire to rush ahead and try and put everything in place. But we always come back to the Lord and His Sacred Heart, knowing that we can surrender, trust, and be led forward in His Love.

As June is the month of the Sacred Heart, He’s asked us to do something we’ve not done before during this season. We will be taking some time to rest in His Heart, abide, and let Him do the deeper work of renewal. To spend time with Him and time focused on He wants, taking a break from doing our regular content to allow for a season of rest, renewal, regrouping, and retooling behind the scenes. The Lord has some new things in store, and we need the space to work on that and abiding with Him instead of trying to figure out how to do that on top of our regular content. Because pruning is really about bearing new fruit.

I watched a video by Dr. Henry Cloud on pruning called “Necessary Endings” that shared an excellent perspective on pruning. Dr. Cloud shares what he learned from award-winning winemakers and rose growers on pruning. I recommend watching it, but the gist is that it isn’t about cutting away, but rather cutting towards a vision of greatness, which involves pruning, which will sustain full fruition of what it should be when we utilize our resources wisely.

God is about a great work of renewal and has been so merciful and loving amidst the pruning. I can’t wait to share more with you about that soon and invite you into the new things we are working on with Him! In the meantime, please pray for us and the renewal work that we’ll be doing with the Lord. And know of our prayers for you, too. And please follow along on our socials for June, as we’ll be sharing what we’ve prepared for this special month devoted to the loving heart of Christ, the source of all love, mercy, and restoration.

About Author

Creative, Entrepreneur & Silly-Heart. Christ has called her to bring the broken to His Sacred Heart. Calls Austin home with her mountain-man husband, Mike, who she loves to travel through life with as well as around the world.

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