Yesterday, as I was walking on the Ancient Paths with my Father, He took me by the hand and led me to a section of His garden that was a beautiful vineyard, filled with luscious grapes. He was walking through the arbor, tenderly caring for His beloved plants, pruning them, admiring them, partaking of their fruit. I knew from John 15 that Yeshua was the True Vine, the Life Source of all these plants. Those who were disconnected from Him were withered and struggling, while those who were rightly connected were flourishing.
I could literally feel the pain and confusion of those who were being pruned, and yet I could also see from the Father’s higher perspective that this pain, if properly responded to, would produce an abundant harvest, bringing Him much, much pleasure. He walked in and out among these vines, admiring the fruitful plants, showing great compassion upon the unfruitful ones, caring for the diseased and withered ones, pruning the ones who were strong enough to sustain it. In this place, there was no time, so the process was all swirled together, making it easy to see the outcome of every process.
He handed me a pair of clippers and communicated to me without words that it was time for me to begin working with Him in His vineyard. He said, “You have known the pain of pruning and are now beginning to see its fruit. This will enable you to work with strength, wisdom and compassion.” He then walked over to a vine with a long, unruly shoot. Instead of pruning it, He simply, and very gently, trained it to stay within the confines of its trellis. I got the feeling that, as usual, I have a lot to learn. But I also sensed that it was the Father’s delight to teach me and to spend time with me in the process. I felt His pleasure that I wanted to be with Him and that I was willing to spend time working with Him in His vineyard.
My attention kept being drawn to a beautiful twinkle in His eyes whenever He looked at His beloved vineyard. His pleasure was contagious, and I began to feel joy welling up inside of me by simply beholding His pleasure. And every time I saw that twinkle, I fell in love with Him all over again…over and over and over, deeper and deeper and deeper, for all eternity. I saw in His exquisite face an ancient beauty wrapped in eternal youthfulness. His eyes were very old, yet ever new. I was drawn into His eyes, like being caught in the ocean’s undertow. I could not resist the gravitational pull of those eyes, and as I entered those beautiful portals of light, I found myself in the vastness of the cosmos, surrounded by stars and galaxies. I felt that if I never returned, if I were lost forever in His gaze as Enoch was, that would be perfectly fine with me. For eternity really has been placed in my heart (Ecclesiastes 3:11), and He really is my home. As the deep in Him called out to the deep in me, my heart said yes… without condition, without reservation. And in this place, I felt such peace, such security, such safety, such utter and complete love.
Then, I suddenly realized that this section of His garden is OUR vineyard – the vineyard that we work together. In the mind-boggling vastness of His kingdom, I am His vineyard, but I also have a vineyard which He and I tend together. He said “As you learn to tend Our vineyard from here (the heavenly realm), you will see earthly fruit, and heaven and earth will align.”
Then the Father stepped up behind me, so close that I could feel His warmth penetrating my back. He gently put His hand around my hand and, through me, pruned a scraggly, unfruitful branch. I felt no guilt, doubt or uncertainly, for I was fully aware that I was merely the conduit, not the source. I was suddenly filled with joy that I knew was coming from the Father. I knew by the Spirit that it was the same joy Yeshua felt… “who, for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2).
Our vineyard is a place of work, but not hard labor. There is no sweat, no striving. It is peaceful activity. And most of all, it is a joyful pursuit. It is a place of joy and pleasure.
Then suddenly, we were in His kingly chamber, sitting around His magnificent banquet table. Here the wine flows freely and heavenly servants were bringing us goblets of the most smooth and exquisite wine imaginable. It is intoxicating, but not in the cheap earthly way which enslaves the soul. It is pure joy, holy ecstasy. It is the fruit of the Spirit flowing from fountains deep within. This joy is not fickle and fleeting. It is strong, solid, stable, unchanging, always accessible no matter what the circumstance, always flowing freely and abundantly. As I drank this wine, I was filled to overflowing with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (the ability to self-govern, under His headship). This wine is freely available to all who choose it, but it must be drunk from the two-handled cup – the cup of both suffering and joy. For losing my life is prerequisite to finding it. And dying to self precedes resurrection and ascension life.
We were drinking together, the King and I…laughing, talking, enjoying the atmosphere and each other’s presence. I drink because I need to be filled, but He lacks nothing. He drinks just to be with me. What holy mystery!
Song of Solomon 7:9-13,
” …And the roof of your mouth like the best wine.
The wine goes down smoothly for my beloved, Moving gently the lips of sleepers.
I am my beloved’s, And his desire is toward me.
Come, my beloved, Let us go forth to the field; Let us lodge in the villages.
Let us get up early to the vineyards;
Let us see if the vine has budded, Whether the grape blossoms are open,
And the pomegranates are in bloom.
There I will give you my love.
The mandrakes give off a fragrance,
And at our gates are pleasant fruits,
All manner, new and old,
Which I have laid up for you, my beloved.”
Note: Just minutes after this encounter, I received the following article from www.spiritfuel.me. I realized that this perfectly aged wine is the wine of promise. While we have been waiting, God’s promises have been aging and maturing. And He has saved the best wine for last!
The Vault Of Heaven Is Open! Your Waiting Wasn’t In Vain!
by Nate Johnston
Recently I had an encounter with the Lord where I found myself walking through the basement floors of a house that I recognized to be His house. It felt like a fortress, safe and secure but I knew I was there for something specific. I then came up to a corridor where many people stood waiting for something. As I approached them I saw this beautiful, old, wooden door or vault with metal inlay set into it, and I knew these people were waiting for whatever was behind this door.
Suddenly angels came and started to twist the wheels that dead-bolted this door in place and by the sound of the creaking of the door I could tell this door had not been opened in a long time.
As I stood, I saw I was in a cellar of the most aged and most precious wines. People were crying in relief like they had been waiting on this for their whole lives. People whose hearts had been sick began to be healed of disappointment and discouragement at the very sight of the goods that were filling the shelves.
I felt drawn to the bottles on the top shelf and I took a bottle down to find an even older, more aged wine that had been collecting dust in this incredible room of the Father’s house and I saw the word “Promise” written on the bottle.
THE WAITING WAS WORSHIP
When the vision stopped I remembered the look on the faces of the people before the door opened, the waiting had been labour-some, holding onto the promise when there was no end in sight, or sign of anything changing, yet their worship grasped firmly onto that promise.
That perfectly describes the last seven-eight year season for many who have been in transition, holding onto their “God-dreams” fervently, while others gave up. He is saying to you today that your waiting was not in vain, it was worship to heaven, and just like a mother awaiting her impending birth, all of heaven is eagerly anticipating your hour of promise that is approaching you.
THE BEST FOR LAST
In John 2 we find the story of where Jesus turned water in wine at a wedding reception.
“The master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside and said, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.” John 2:9-10
I believe God is speaking over your life right now that He saving His best for last. While you have been waiting, His promises over you have been aging and maturing. You are about to see Him turn your “nothing” into “something”. Where you have felt dry and thirsty, the wine of His presence is about to flood your life again.
THE VAULT IS OPEN!
For days after this encounter I kept hearing the scripture Isaiah 45:1-3;
“This is what the LORD says to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I take hold of to subdue nations before him and to strip kings of their armor, to open doors before him so that gates will not be shut. I will go before you and will level the mountains; I will break down gates of bronze and cut through bars of iron. I will give you hidden treasures, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the LORD, the God of Israel, who summons you by name”
It’s time to shake off the dust off your waiting season, your season of transition, and live from the unlimited resources God is making available to you. Prepare your heart to receive as the door to your promise is unlocking in this new season of anticipation and fulfillment.