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MEDITATION:
I Am the Vine, You Are the Branches
 
John 15: 1-8
 

There are many ways to read scripture. We can analyze it and bring our intellectual and scholarly mind to it. We can read it historically, contextually, or as literature. We can read it for spiritual wisdom and growth in any number of ways.  Today I”d like to work with the text from our gospel on the vine and the branches through meditation, inviting us to enter the metaphor, and encounter the images in our deep soul space; It is indeed a way to pray the scripture.

 

Simply relax and let go, and allow the metaphor and images of the scripture to move into your heart space.

 

I invite you to close your eyes as you are comfortable, to relax, and to begin to let your body be supported

Visualize as you are able, a vine with many branches………Look at it closely in your mind’s eye….You may experience this visually, or as an idea, or something you just get a sense of..Don’t judge, let it be how it will be for you today.. Notice the colours…….Notice the whole beingness of this plant………..the odour…….the textures of the leaves………..the older gnarled part of the trunk………the branches of new life that have come in that year……..the fruit that is forming……..Where is the vine planted?……Is it a sunny or shady place?……….What kind of soil is the vine planted in?……..How big is the vine?………How widely does it spread out?…………Is this vine standing alone?………or are there other vines around?……….

 

.Now I invite you to become the vine………to imagine yourself……..and feel yourself as this vine……….Take some time to become aware of yourself as vine……….Experience the kind of soil that you are in…….and how it contains or holds you…….Notice as well if the soil restricts you……..Experience your roots as they reach down into the soil…….Are they strong and firmly anchored to the soil?………..Are they intertwined with other roots?………….Are other plants encroaching on you…….taking moisture and nourishment from you?…….Do you need to put down new and stronger roots?…..reaching further down to get what you need? … Experience your main stalk……….Is it strong and capable of carrying the life from the earth?……..Experience the vitality and growing in you……..the energy that comes through you from the earth to bring life and growth…….Become aware of the branches that come out from your central vine…………Feel the growth and the greenness of the life flowing through you……….Be aware of any buds that are about to burst into growth……….So many branches…………Take a good look at all of the branches……..Notice the fruit that is forming………the fruit that is ripening in you…..How much fruit is there?……..Is it healthy?………….Are there any parts of the vine that are sick?…….that have become dead?…….where growth has been stunted?…..that has become prey to parasites or mold?……….Are there parts that need pruning to allow for the growth and health of the vine?…………..Are there parts that are growing too wildly…..taking too much energy from the whole vine, so that not all parts of the vine can get the nurture they need?………..Be in touch with your needs as a vine……… your need for nourishment………..your need for space to grow………for water…….for healthy air…….for sun…….. for well-tended soil………your need to have your sickness cared for before it destroys you……….Experience your need for a gardener……..for one who will care for you….watch and protect your growth……nurture you……..deal with your sickness and dead parts………Experience also any resistance and mistrust you might feel……..Allow your needs to increase so that you overcome your mistrust of the gardener……….and let yourself experience the nourishment………the care………..the healing………..the protection………that come from this gardener………Feel the gardener’s delight in your growth………and the gardener’s encouragement of your growing……..Experience what happens to you as you allow the gardener to care for you………..What is it that the gardener needs to do for your healthy growth right now?………..Can you let that happen?………….What feelings arise?………..As you allow the life force for growing and healing to be strengthened in you………Allow the gardener to let you know the depth of the care that is there for you………Gradually draw yourself back to being your body self……….Become aware again of your breathing…….Make some gentle movements with your body as you begin to connect……Gently and gradually bring yourself back to this place…As you feel ready ….open your eyes.

 

From Healing Oasis, Sharon Moon (United Church Publishing House)

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