Talking with His disciples the night before He died, Jesus used a vineyard analogy to reveal His plan to bring every one of His followers to a place of genuine spiritual abundance. But if we don’t understand how God works in our lives to bring that wonderful harvest about, we can actually work against His good hand in our lives without ever knowing it.
“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser… I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit… (John 15: 1, 5)”
Secrets of the Vine is the bestseller written by Bruce Wilkinson. This version, written by his wife, is aimed at a female audience. I had not read the former and presumed this would be a short little gift-type book that I would flip through in an hour. How wrong I was. I thought this would be a book I’d read, review and then pass onto my church’s library. Again, I was wrong. There were so many points that stood out and demanded my attention that the pages are now covered in yellow highlighter.
Mrs. Wilkinson has taken a chapter I’ve read and heard several times, and brings it alive. I live near Lake Eriewine country, and have seen plenty of vineyards. I’ve seen the vines but never thought of them representing Jesus, and I’ve never thought of myself as one of the many branches. But reading this book makes so much sense. God is the vinedresser who wants so much from us, but we have to be willing. If there is sin in our lives, we need to turn from it in order to begin producing fruit. If the fruit is good but not great, God may ‘prune’ parts of our lives. It might be hard, but it will be worth it.
I’m also working through a Bible study based on Priscilla Shirer’s take on Jonah. Why do I mention that? Because this week’s study has gone over a very similar subject. First, we need to repent and turn from where we are, and then we need to follow what God wants from us in order to produce much fruit. This people, is no coincidence. This is God speaking, and I know I’ve been convicted. I also know that this is a book I will be keeping and using as a reference tool in my life.
A Readers’ Guide is included.
I received my free copy of Secrets of the Vine for Women from Waterbrook Multnomah for this review.