Tea in the Vineyards

Come & join me for a cuppa in the vineyards my friend. A few hours drive from here we have a region that is well known for its wine making & great cafés.

While driving to our destination we pass vineyard after vineyard, as far as the eye can see there are rows & rows of well trained vines & spreading branches.

With different varieties of grapes in each Vineyard to attain just the right blend, texture & taste for discerning palates that the Vintner is seeking to please.

We chat about the Vintners (wine makers) who work very closely with the Vine dressers, as the vine dresser is the one who knows his vines & how to get the finest quality grapes from them.

Notice it’s the finest quality not quantity of fruit that both the Vintner & Vine dresser are seeking to harvest from the branches of the vine.

At the moment we are in Spring here in Australia, so as we travel we notice that the vines have sprung to life with lush new growth. But we also know this has happened only after…The Winter Pruning 

The Vine Dresser

Let’s look at the job of the Vine Dresser for a moment, his job is to cultivate, train & prune the branches of the vine to get the finest quality fruit with just the right amount of acidity content, moisture & the perfect taste for the Vintner to turn into wine.

In other words he really knows his stuff, he even knows what particular pests to watch out for that will harm the particular varieties he has planted.

As we arrive at our destination, we find a quaint little café in amongst the vineyards. We order our treats…mine is a Chai Lattè with a gf Blueberry Friand. What’s yours?

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We settle in an Alfresco setting overlooking a large dam with ducks floating upon its surface, flourishing vines all around us, beautifully manicured gardens & breathe a sigh of contentment.

We chat about the winter seasons pruning as we observe the lush green growth on the vines.

I comment to you that it’s been one huge & very strange year, which has felt a lot like pruning to me!

The pruning of 2020

I have learnt that the pruning shears of the great Vine Dresser can be used in ways I just did not see coming!

Even when I know that abiding in the Vine, as we shared in Are you struggling my friend, incorporates pruning! Boy that pruning process can feel rather painful at times…can’t it!

And as Beth Moore intimates in her recent book Chasing Vines (our Book club’s read) that not all loss is pruning but it can definitely look & feel like it! Refer 2

Did you know that Jesus said,

“I am the True Vine, & my Father is the Vine Dresser. Any branch in Me that does not bear fruit [that stops bearing] He cuts away (trims off, takes away); & He cleanses & repeatedly prunes every branch that continues to bear fruit, to make it bear more & richer & more excellent fruit.”

John 15: 1-2 Refer 2

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Although it feels painful at times, I really am grateful for the lessons & blessings of the True Vine & the Great Vine dresser’s pruning. Why? Let me give you a few examples…

While the firestorms of January were absolutely devastating here in Australia. It really brought into perspective what truly is important in this life & what isn’t! Pruning away what isn’t, revealed…

The blessing that my aged parents & their home (which is a scantuary to them in this stage of life were kept safe from that approaching fiery monster (full story Here).

While living in this pandemic has been a very intimidating experience with many of my family members having to work on the front lines.

It has taught me to grow much deeper into being still, knowing that He indeed is God & quietly trusting Him for the spiritual health of my family.

While not being able to spend time with my daughter’s & grandchildren who live interstate seems like a harsh pruning during this pandemic (the state borders are still closed!). Pruning away the travel plans & expectations I had for this year has revealed…

The blessing of today’s communication technologies which have been so very precious in being able to keep in touch during this time of isolation.

And hubby & I have a much deeper appreciation for each other, sprouting new life into our marriage!

When the branches are trimmed, even the smallest of blessings can be seen & appreciated!

As in the following…

Having our groceries delivered to our door (contactless) because of our high risk factors for CoVid, may seem a small thing to many but to this ol’ couple with chronic health conditions it truly is a luxurious blessing.

Yes, new growth & blessings definitely come from pruning, even in the strangest of times such as a pandemic.

What blessings are you grateful for in this strangest of year’s my friend?

Well, both our cups are now empty & only crumbs line our plates. It’s time for us to travel back…I hope you enjoyed our time in the vineyards today dear friend.

Until next time,

Jennifer

You’re most welcome to join me in The Reading Nook


© 2020 Jennifer M. Ross, teawithjennifer.blog, All Rights Reserved.  Photo on Pexels.com

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22 thoughts on “Tea in the Vineyards

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  1. What a beautiful post Jennifer! The difference in what we see in the vineyards between Winter and Spring is amazing. Before winter, (at least around here) those vines are cut so far back they look like they’ll never produce anything again. Come Spring, though, they’re full and lush. I try to remember that during times of ‘pruning.’ It can feel horribly painful while it’s happening, but it gives us what we need to grow into who God created us to be.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Terri! Oh yes when they’re pruned they look so dejected & bare! But when Spring comes they come to life with so much lush new green growth. It truly is amazing 😀
      Yes, growing in who He created us to be includes pruning in season & new growth for the other seasons. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Jennifer, what a lovely post. Yes, this year has been one for the records. We had Hurricane/Tropical Storm Zeta pass over us on Wednesday night. We had minor damage, but many had lots of damage and thousands are still without power. This year has definitely been a pruning and cutting back. God is sovereign and He knows that I need that. Blessings, sweet friend ♥️

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I have never heard the term “vine dresser” before. Thank you for teaching me something new. we may not always enjoy the pruning, but we cannot know what God knows. 2020 has been a year of hard pruning. I hope we come back with vines more lush and green than ever.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. For me the hardest part of this has been being unable to go to church. I always knew church was essential, but I didn’t realize how much I counted on a weekly infusion of hope and love. Yes streaming is good. Yes Zoom classes are fine. But nothing replaces worshiping with others. A pruning I have yet to see the purpose of.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Sounds like a perfect outing Jennifer. I have had some great outings over the past couple of weeks. I took my friend to several places she had never been and she enjoyed it so much. And of course I enjoyed it too. While we were just getting back to church being open I had an idea of how to minister to one of our ladies who is totally compromised, having to use oxygen all the time and losing her eyesight too. I called her to see if she would like me to read her some of the stories in my book of short stories. She said yes, and I have been reading one every week or two to her. She is thoroughly enjoying this and that is a blessing to me as well. I also have been making more phone calls to people and am blessed in sharing a blessing.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Jennifer, hi! Yes, this has been a year of pruning and it’s hurt … and most likely is not over. But the One who holds us in His hands so gently will keep us safe and will create something good as we invite Him to.

    I’m grateful with you that your family is safe and well.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ahhh, Jennifer. You have me breathing deep with your photos and images and reminders about Jesus being the Vine Dresser. I’m so thankful He knows just where to prune.

    I am thankful God taught me how to work on my dreams, even in the midst of so much uncertainty. I’m thankful He was with me during some difficult, disappointing times. And I’m thankful for the ways He’s drawn our family together this year. It’s definitely been a year with some hard seasons, but He’s made his presence and love known through it all.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Jennifer, your words and photos were like a sweet balm today. This year has been a challenging one for us all. I am grateful our God has held us in His hands, providing peace in the midst of turmoil, and filling us with joy along the way. Pruning is not easy but it is necessary for future growth and that is what I am keeping my eyes on. Blessings and thank you for sharing a tea time with me.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Thanks for this encouragement, Jennifer! I hadn’t thought before that the quality of the fruit mattered more than the quantity. This is reassuring at a time when opportunities are much scarcer than usual.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Jennifer I feel like I was on this visit to the vineyards with you! What a beautiful description of the outdoor cafe and our little treat together! I especially appreciate the reminder that abiding in Christ also includes pruning. Though that pruning can be painful, the results are always good, because He is good! Thank you, my friend for the visit to the vineyards today!

    Liked by 1 person

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