Grafting into the Vine

How does a branch that is not a 
branch become one? By grafting. It must be severed from the plant on which it grew, and the severed surface is brought to a wounded place in the vine’s stem, and bound there, heart to heart, and from that wounded place in the stem the sap flows out, and seals the branch into union, and then it finds its way into the channels of the graft, and soon it needs no outward bonds to bind it there: it has become one with the vine, and the power and sweetness of the vine flow into the branch that has lost its own life to find it in the new life which flows on till leaves and flowers and fruit appear.

Lilias Trotter, The Way of the Seven-fold Secret, Chapter VII: The Secret of Abiding

17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree, 18 do not be arrogant toward the branches. If you are, remember it is not you who support the root, but the root that supports you. 23 And even they, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God has the power to graft them in again. 24 For if you were cut from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and grafted, contrary to nature, into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these, the natural branches, be grafted back into their own olive tree.

Romans 11: 17-18 & 23-24, ESV

Thank You, Papa, for the wounding You allowed us to walk through, even as Your heart broke for us, knowing that we did not yet see the beauty that would come. Thank You for being a good Father to us, for not choosing what would cause us and You no pain, but for choosing that which was best for us. Thank You for severing us from all that we once clung to and trusted in that was stealing from us and destroying Your beauty in us. Thank You for becoming our trust, as You now daily teach us how to return and rest in Your never-forsaking and abiding love for us and Your Body.

Papa, thank You for binding us together to Your heart, giving us a new and undivided heart in You. Thank You for setting us apart unto Yourself in the severing, for leading us out to pasture, where Your lost sheep are now grazing with us. Thank You for binding us together with them, through the wounding and severing you have walked us through. Thank You for giving us eyes to see Your beauty hidden inside of them, as they have become Your seeing of us and Your comfort to us, just as we have become Your seeing of them and Your comfort to them.

Thank You that before they or we even called to You, You began to answer us, setting Your plan into motion to graft us together into the Vine. Thank You that even while they and we were yet speaking, You heard our cries and set a plan in motion to rescue us. Papa, continue to call to our remembrance prayers we once prayed (even as children), and even yearnings we couldn’t even express in words (even as children), so that we might see just how beautifully You have been answering our deepest heart’s cries all along in ways we couldn’t have even imagined as children.

Wow us with who You are and how much higher and greater Your thoughts and Your plans are for us and our loved ones too. Continue to break our boxes of who we think You are to show us who You truly are. Open the eyes of our hearts to see You and to know You more and more and more, that we might grow abiding fruit and healing leaves in great abundance, as You multiply our meager gifts to bless us and Your whole Body. In Jesus’ precious Name, Amen.

Before they call I will answer; while they are yet speaking I will hear.

Isaiah 64:24 (ESV)

From Russia and Georgia With Love

Sharing a dear friend’s words today. If you haven’t heard about her Roma – God’s Roma – may this encourage you to read from the start of Debbie’s book about this gift from God all the way from Russia (and Georgia), a gift who just keeps on giving from the heavenly places in Jesus. God cares about the tiniest details of our lives. Not even one sparrow falls to the ground without him noticing – so how much more does He care for each one of us: His children. Thank You, Jesus!

Not only had I grieved for Roma the past one year, six months, and two days, I had grieved for Liana, and then Lia when I became aware of the extended close-knit family, a family who I had grown to love and respect from our first awkward translations on VK.com, Russia’s social media. My favorite topics of conversation for weeks was this unbelievable and miraculous news.

From Russia and Georgia With Love