V for Vine
I’d like to invite you today to come on a journey. You have been invited to see the oldest vine in the country which is growing in a conservatory at a large old country house. This is a special day, as you have a private invitation and the general public do not usually have access to this Vine. How do you feel about this invitation? Excited? Not bothered? Perplexed as to how you got the invitation?
Imagine arriving at the estate and driving up the mile long drive. Take time to notice, as many details as you can. The weather/the scenery/the house as it comes into view. As you draw near the house, an elderly man comes out to greet you. Observe him carefully. What is he like, what is he wearing? How does he walk? What strikes you about his face? You park the car and get out to greet him. He warmly shakes your hand and welcomes you and takes you round to the back of the house and through the gardens towards the conservatory. What do you talk about? What do you notice about the gardens?
You arrive at the conservatory and he opens the door. You go in. The Vine is massive and the old man begins to tell you its history. You see the old knarled trunk. The branches spreading out, and out, and the leaves. What are you thinking? What are you feeling? You see where the vine has been pruned and trimmed over the years and the abundant growth which has resulted from such careful care. It is quiet and peaceful in the conservatory and the old man says he will leave you for a while to enjoy the peace and the vine.
As you are looking at the Vine you hear someone call you name. You turn round and there is Jesus. What does he say to you? What do you want to say to him? Are there any parts of your life that he wants to prune? Will you let him do so? Are there any questions you have for him about your own growth and fruitfulness? Spend time with him. Before he leaves, Jesus cuts off a bunch of grapes and gives it to you. Once he has left, you leave the conservatory and sit on the old wooden garden bench, outside the conservatory. You enjoy the warmth of the sunshine and the view of the gardens and house.
Then when you are ready, slowly return to the room. You may like to record your experience of this meditation in your journal.