The Divine Vintner

Gerardo Zavala

"Moab has been at rest from youth, like wine left on its dregs, not poured from one jar to another, she has not gone into exile.  So she tastes as she did, and her aroma is unchanged."  Jeremiah 48:11

Jeremiah illustrates that through knowledge in the art of wine making, that a life in comfort does not produce strength in character.  Provided that the wine is fermented in barrels or vats, the dregs or remnants sink to the bottom.  If the wine is left undisturbed, it becomes unpleasant to the taste.  The vintner wine should be emptied from vessel to vessel to remove debris and impurities.  Only then will the wine develop strength, aroma, and flavor.

Moab had always lived in peace.  He had never suffered the hardships of captivity.  He isolate himself from problems, pain, and deprivation.  The result was that his life was monotonous and insipid.  He lacked fragrance and seasoning in his life.

What is said of the wine also goes for us.  We need the obstacles, the opposition, the difficulties, and discomfort to get rid of impurities in order for us to develop the virtues of a life in Christ.  Our natural tendency is to unceasingly protect ourselves of anything that disturbs us.

A patient goes to the doctor in very poor physical health.  The doctor asks for an analysis, x-rays, an electrogram, etc.  The results are disastrous.  The doctor says, "You have 6 months of life".  "Six months!", exclaims the man.  "Correct", says the doctor.  "Doctor, I'm young.  I have a wife, children and I'm going to die in 6 months?  Is there any way I can avoid this?"  "You should stop smoking", replies the doctor.  "Quit smoking?  Not even one cigarette?"  "None, and no alcohol."  "No alcohol?"  "Not a glass or anything.  And no women."  "No women?  But I...well doctor, and if I do all that, I'll live more?"  "No, but they will be the longest 6 months of your life."

God's will for us is that we live in the midst of an ongoing crisis.  That will lead us to depend and rely on Him.  Our Lord will always be stirring the nest.  I was speaking with Abraham.  He has been a member of our church for years.  He waited for a kidney transplant for years until God answered his petition.  He said, "I now know that all of those years were a painful process that God used to purify my life and make me a better child." 

When we realize what the Divine Vintner is seeking to make in our lives, we abandon our rebellion and learn to submit and rely on Him.

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