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Garden related testimony

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Jim Taylor:
Hi Everyone,

My first post...  seems best to give a testimony, but I can not yet post in the testimony section, so I thought that I would place this here in "Lessons from Nature".  This is a real experience from late summer 2007, in my mind I call this "Jonah on a Grape Vine".

God Bless,



My wife and I raise a rather large garden.  It is about 6000 sqft.  This year we decided to plant grape vines, and by and large the vines were my responsibility.  The plants were received in early spring and I made great care to build fencing, improve the soil and plant all the vines as soon as they arrived. 

Over the summer the plants in the vineyard were growing extremely well, and fruit had developed.  Ordinarily, you should cut off all of the first years fruit as it probably won’t develop well and may slow down vine growth, but I was not able to bring myself to cut the fruit off.  Instead I paid careful attention to the plants, and trimmed around the fruit to give it plenty of air and sunlight.

As the season went by, I was happily surprised to see the fruit growing well and ripening.  As the time was near to pick the clusters, my family was returning from a trip.  After getting out of the car, I was showing my wife how well the fruit had developed and tasting the quality.  The fruit tasted unbelievably flavorful, and I was more excited about a bunch of grapes than anyone logically should be.  There were only six clusters on about 4 vines, but I was exceedingly happy over my little harvest, I expected that all would be ready in a day or two, and I could pick them.

I went into my house for a moment.  When I came back out, I went to look them over one more time.  Every cluster was gone.  My dog (Finny – a red and white Irish Setter) was hanging out by the vines, sniffing around a couple of dropped grapes on the ground.  I was furious, in my mind I saw my children playing with their toys on a red and white Finny fur rug.  My dog was moments away from being skinned.

Well, I calmed down by the time I chased him out of the garden.  I was very grumbly, and could not believe that I had in minutes lost every cluster to the dog.  I decided that I would sit down in the dirt, dig up potatoes, and complain to God.  As I sat in the potato row, looking at my grape vines and complaining, I could not help but think of Jonah under his vine.  The similarities seemed very pronounced to me at the time, I felt like throwing dust on my head over my mourning.  I know this sounds a bit extreme, but those grapes had made me very happy.

As I was talking this over in a sort of prayer/talk to God, suddenly a voice came back.  I can only explain this as an unexpected reply, which came completely out of my line of thought.  The voice said simply:  “How do you think I feel about My Harvest?”  I was so shocked that I bounced backwards.

I sat staring at the vines.  As I considered this, I saw all of the work that had gone into bringing the harvest to this point.  And, it was lost in only a few moments.  I am humbled by what God has done for us, only to see the thief steal his harvest.  At times it must be heart breaking to watch us from heaven.

Brother Jim, it is good to have you join us and share this experience with us. God often talks to us through our experience in His creation. What a wonderful God we serve! These are the kinds of experiences that will stick with us along with the lesson.

Oh, Brother Taylor! That is a mighty story and a powerful testament to the heart of God as He sees His harvest snatched away! We could multiply that by a million and probably not touch the pain of it from His perspective!

We are very happy to have you with us. Complete your registration and you can share with us other ways in which God had led and blest you.



Sister Dee:
I am just amazed at the things the Lord will use to get our attention!  Thank you for sharing this story with us.  It was given me much to ponder. 

What a wonderful object lesson, Brother Jim!  But, I'm wondering how you keep up with a garden that size?  It's twice as big as ours, and we still don't do a good job at keeping up with the weeds.


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