I shared this with the body a while back, and I believe I said I’d post it to my blog — but of course I forgot. 😳 So . . . I happened to think of it just now. It’s the story of a little grape and his journey into the Son:
The Journal of a Grape
Hanging with the brothers and sisters, drawing our life from the vine; what could be better? We’re close, brother. We do everything together: bask in the same sunshine, get drenched by the same rains. I guess you could say we’re about as close as it’s possible to be. We’ve found the way, man. Community rocks!!! Too bad for all those other fruits that have to grow all alone and isolated – not like us. We’re just one big bunch of grapes.
I’m not saying I don’t like it here or anything. This is better than anything I’ve ever known. Somehow I wonder, though . . . is this all there is? Seems to me there should be more. More of God’s glory, more power, more intimacy somehow. I mean, I know my brothers and sisters better than I know almost anyone else on the planet, but it still seems like there’s a barrier – a separation that we haven’t breached. What is it? How do I get inside and let them get inside me? I know when the Vinedresser has His perfect will with us, we truly will be one as He is One. We haven’t gotten there yet, but I have hope that we will, one day.
Midsummer Night’s Dream
Last night I dreamed of darkness. I know that sounds strange. After all, dreams happen when you’re asleep . . . with your eyes closed . . . hello! But this was a different kind of darkness. I felt like I was somehow losing myself. I’m still trembling. The brothers and sisters seem out of sorts today, too, and I don’t know why. I didn’t tell them about my dream. Maybe they had the same dream? What does it mean? The sun almost hurts today it’s so hot. I can feel myself swelling with juicy goodness but I wonder: will I burst? My skin feels so tight. In the evening, the Vinedresser finally turned on the sprinkler system. What a relief! I don’t know how many more days like this I can take.
What a huge red moon just rose tonight! It’s getting cooler, too. We grapes have all grown so much. No one’s skin popped or anything, but I sure thought mine would a couple of times. I really have to wonder what’s next for us. We can’t keep hanging here forever doing no one any good but ourselves. What’s the next step? Where do we go from here?
Today the Vinedresser came through the field and cut us from the vine! What does that mean? I don’t know what to think of this. Is He somehow displeased with us? Now we’re all piled up in a kind of huge tub thing with lots of other bunches of grapes. There are sounds here and there in the night as vineyard workers scurry around doing what I can’t even imagine. Neither I nor any of the other grapes know what to think of this. It’s a chilly night, so it’s nice to be piled up so close to one another.
The Big Squeeze!
Ouch!!! What a painful day we’ve all had. The vineyard workers STEPPED on us! Over and over and over; feet treading all over us. Our skins really did burst and our insides all ran together. They stepped and stepped until all the insides were squeezed out of us and ran together to the bottom of the tub thing. You’d think I could no longer write in this journal, but the strangest thing is that though I and all of my brothers and sisters are all mixed together now, with no skins to separate us, I still know who I am and who they are. In fact, I know it better than ever. I can’t tell you, journal, how much it hurt to have our skins squished and broken and our flesh crushed. Oy! And yet, now that it’s over, I realize that the thing I’ve been wanting for so long . . . for us to be one . . . has finally happened. I never knew myself so well as I know now; now that I can see myself through my brothers’ and sisters’ eyes, and of course, I’ve never known my brothers and sisters the way I do now; now that we are truly one.
The Vinedresser has taken to calling us “must”. We’re all together in a huge vat now, recovering from a seriously HARSH day. We were cooked! All together in this vat. I can’t tell you . . . the Vinedresser said it was to rid us of impurities that might spoil the wine, whatever THAT is. And then, just when we’d begun to feel comfortable and cool again, He poured in some brown powdery stuff all over us and stirred us up and covered us with a cloth. I’m feeling very strange.
Whoa! Something has definitely changed here. There’s a new kind of . . . I don’t know . . . LIFE here. The life isn’t in any one of us, but it seems to be all around us and running through us. Kind of a bubbly, fizzy sense of LIFE just bubbling up from the midst of us. The Vinedresser came and stirred us up a couple of times today and the “life” kind of disappeared for a little while, but then it would come back after an hour or so, even stronger. We seem to be rising in the vat – filling it more than we did before the LIFE was added.
After the Fizz started, we fizzed along for a week or so and then the Vinedresser poured us all through a sieve and THREW OUR SKINS AWAY! We didn’t mind as much as I thought. The skins has become nothing but a mushy pile at the bottom of the vat anyway. The skins did leave a mark on us. We’re still red, for example, and I think rather spicy. We didn’t need the skins anyway because the Vinedresser poured us into new skins – not each of us individually – that would be impossible – but all of us together. That’s the way we like it. We’ve been sitting in these new skins fermenting (I heard the Vinedresser use that word) and we can feel definite changes in ourselves. We were sweet before, but now we’re positively intoxicating. We were a little harsh, but now I sense we’re beginning to mellow. We’re blending together with one another so that we compliment and complete one another more. Bits I didn’t know were in us have settled to the bottom of the new skins. Tomorrow the Vinedresser says He will pour us off the lees. I think He means those bits there at the bottom. They don’t taste too good and aren’t really part of us.
It’s official. We are now new wine and have been poured into new wineskins. The lees have been left behind and we are pure and ready to be poured out to nourish and sustain the nations. The Vinedresser seems pleased with us. He declared us pleasant to taste and good for life. Hooray! Some of us will be left to age and develop into mature wine and some of us will be used immediately. When I say “some of us, I’m not talking about some of us as individuals, you understand. That wouldn’t be possible. We’re one. I mean some of us as in some of all of us. The Vinedresser is so wise. He cared for each of us even when we were little individual grapes, and He has nurtured us through this process of becoming one body of wine together. At last nothing is lacking. We are one in Him.
Wikipedia: to be definition: ”’obsolete”’ safe from danger or harm. →