I love it when a book relates to my personal life and circumstances. (Don’t we all?) I am a farm girl/gardener at heart. I know the taste of milk straight from the cow, cracklins fresh from the hot grease, tomatoes, and green beans hand-picked. Yet, grapes, the how and why of them, and their relationship to my Christian growth, is a new concept.
Using John 15:1-8 Chasing Vines covers our growth as branches of the One Vine. She covers such topics as, personal growth, abiding, bearing fruit, pruning, fertilizing, manure, and much more. In her matchless style, she brings these eight verses to life, giving insight into the growth process of the grape as it relates to our own lives as Christians.
Beth’s comment, “I’m pretty sure most people who serve an unseen God for enough years, trying their danged hardest to obey His inaudible directions and love His confounding people with their own contorted hearts, live a quarter-inch from sheer madness much of the time,” (pg. 56) resounded with me. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a celebrity preacher/teacher or sojourn with a small group of Believers, people are people. They’re difficult, demanding, denying, disturbing, dusty, deliberate, defying… I get it.
Throughout the book, the reader is made aware of the need to be a good fruit producer. Ms. Moore contends it is not only possible but probable that the branches (believers and unbelievers, alike) can produce bitter and bad fruit. Her solution: Galatians 5:22-23. If these 9 qualities are in any way being compromised it’s bad fruit. If, on the other hand, they are supported, then the fruit is good.
Although I highly recommend this book, and since this is a review, I must say that I did find a bit of insensitivity to the elderly in her discussion of pruning. From time to time I also found way more discussion of a concept than was necessary. But as I said before, all in all, all of it, is worth it.
I want to leave you with these words, directly from Miss Beth, “If you’re in Christ, He is your true Vine, whether you realize it or not. But a whole new way of flourishing begins when you know it. When you count on it. When you live like it. When you let go of the vines you thought were giving you life.” (pg. 129)
Blessings to you and yours!
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