Christ's word and work is alive! Christ's aliveness can be seen and heard through the messages of the grapevines and soils of Steinbeck Vineyards; dust and sand, rocks and mountains.
The call to live life, fully alive in Christ, is made clear through my unfolding the Scriptures, rich vineyard imagery, my stories and testimony of Christ's work in my life.
I am the Vine; you are the branches
Jesus' words began to resonate so clearly to me through the vines of the vineyard I saw from my tractor seat as I drove back and forth down the long rows! As I learned the seasons and cycles of the vines, I realized just how profound Christ's words spoken after the Upper Room and before the cross are for us today.
The visible drip of sap flowing through the yet-to-be-healed wound from the pruning sheers in this beautiful photo reveals a rich truth: Christ's life, His blood, flows in us at all times, pumping through our veins. Peter says, "by his wounds we are healed."
Abide In Christ, The True Vine
Jesus said, "Abide in me." Abide means to remain, to stay in relationship with. The vines in our vineyards are grafted onto rootstock by the nursery prior to being planted. Rootstock is a wild vine that is not susceptible to disease and does not bear fruit, but it provides a lifetime "home" for the varietal we choose to plant. The root provides nutrients and stability.
Look very closely - the vine grows just slightly crooked at the graft union. There is a sticky, glue like substance a bandaid of sorts which holds the little bud in the vine.
The image is clear: the root of our lives is Christ, the True Vine. He is holy; He provides nutrients and water to the branches. The little bud such as Cabernet Sauvignon is the branch, you and me, grafted into the vine. Our home is IN Christ. Abiding in Christ's holy root we live life, grow and bear fruit.
Dust Settles; we won't settle!
God formed Adam out of the dust of the ground, breathed into him the breath of life, and Adam became a living being. The breath of God continues to create life. The dust teaches us not to settle for anything less than truly living life. What do we need to learn before our return to the dust? How do we live life by the breath of God?
Jesus asks us, "What do you want me to do for you?" and "Who do you say that I am?"
Rows 124 & 55
Row 124 is a vineyard row in Steinbeck Vineyards. It has become a place to leave our "burdens" in the merciful hands of a loving God. I continue to learn to "give it to God" in this very special place. Many have journeyed here, leaving behind a rock that represents the hurts of this life they want to leave behind.
Row 55 is the rejoicing row. As I’ve learned to leave "stuff" in Row 124. Row 55 represents the celebration that comes with experiencing Christ's healing mercy.