One of the most profound experiences I’ve had was the result of a free course on food addiction called The Lord’s Table. (www.settingcaptivesfree.com)
The heart of the course – the Vine – John 15, and those lessons, and a passage from Zephaniah have run through my mind all week, I’m sure because this Monday I began a month-long commitment to movement and health with ShapelyGirls Fitness.
Zeph. 3:17 The LORD your God is with you,
he is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
he will quiet you with his love,
he will rejoice over you with singing.”
So picture the Owner – the Master – in the Vineyard, singing over his vines as he cares for them.
My first thoughts run with those of a friend who is going through a valley right now –and then the GPS last night as my path unexpectedly detoured again and again through construction, the call rang out – ‘make a U turn’, ‘make a U turn’…
And I’m thinking, shouldn’t I have learned these lessons already? How did I get here again?
So Monday I begin by responding to the invitation to spend some time in the vineyard. I work out grudgingly because I don’t realize how weak the unstretched muscles have become and how much it hurts to wake them up!
Tuesday I acknowledge I have the privilege to live in MY Father’s Vineyard, where I’ll be cared for more tenderly than anywhere else in the world, because He cares for me like no other ever has or will.
And the passage from Zephaniah comforts me that the rest of this journey will not only be possible but will, if I rest in the Father’s loving care, be a time of joyful singing – somewhat likely happiness that I made it through that experience (!) and also a celebration that I’ve been so loved – taken care of with DELIGHT (have I so delighted in the fact that He has committed to be with me, not for a month or a year, but forever)
That LOVE – His love – has quieted me.
It is seldom that I am quiet. Seldom that I have less than 3 things going at once. (leaving in a few minutes for another). And this is the quiet you sigh with great release and a peace that all is well with my soul. His love quiets me like that – satisfies me so I’m not needing to rush about seeking that illusive something to correct the way I feel. Being close – connected – to the vine, is enough.
He SINGS over me. His little branch, that time and again says I am too busy for water, I can get by, and then finds out she is wrong…I need to stop, and let the vine sing over me like I’ve sung over my babies, holding them close and letting them feel my heart beating.
Ah. It has been a crazy week, and yet, I can already tell, this next one will be even better.
Join me, would you, for a month-long retreat in the Vineyard.
If you are like me, you will want to experience all there is to enjoy, and you may struggle to relax enough to enjoy it!
I’m praying for you this month as a part of my monthly commitment, that you also will be reminded of who is with you in this sometimes-painful journey in the Vineyard.
Inspired also in part by chapter titles from In My Father’s Vineyard, by Wayne Jacobsen…titles used by permission of Thomas Nelson publishers.