Interesting ‘New Wine’ Facts…

There is a wonderful verse found in Is 65:8 which states that “…as new wine is found in the cluster…” it is a verse that has been in my heart for many years.   We live in a world of individuality and the success of self-made people, we so often make these individuals the pinnacles of life.   This simple scripture reminds me that true newness is found not in individuality but in the many.   New wine, the wine of God is not in a single grape but in the cluster all the grapes on the vine being worked together to become the new wine of God.

Unfortunately we have been so taken with achieving at any cost we forget that God is after cluster people, relationship, people who are willing to change their shape being pressed into each other to become the “New Wine”

Here are some wine facts I came across while being in our beloved South Africa, you may find it interesting to see how it takes a cluster to produce a single glass. The cup we must drink must be the cup of a cluster!   A TOGETHER life, a corporate body and people group, not individuals we so often see in our day with individual Celebrities, but a whole people given to become the new wine of God,  the church has to become the cluster of God.

1 grape cluster = 1 glass     

75 grapes = 1 cluster

4 clusters = 1 bottle

40 clusters = 1 vine     

1 vine = 10 bottles

1200 clusters = 1 barrel

1 barrel = 60 gallons

60 gallons = 25 cases

30 vines = 1 barrel

400 vines = 1 acre

1 acre = 5 tons

5 tons = 332 cases

 Determine that in 2012 you will invest into the cluster, and not only your own ministry or status.    

Be a part of the cluster of New Wine! 

Power in our World of Words

As Christians we are taught of the power one carries in our spoken words they can encourage, discourage, and affect atmospheres.   The scriptures say, “…the power of life and death is in the tongue…” In other words what comes out of the mouth will have some effect in the world that surrounds us as well as affect me.    Words can transform environments yet our society tells that the seat of power lies in the brain or our minds, I would suggest we realize that really it is in our mouths and what comes out is more powerful than any thought.    As I speak I groom my mind, it sets a course, along with this, what I say tells you where my thoughts are, “…out of the fullness of the heart the mouth speaks…” the bible says this is where real transformational power lies.  “…As a man thinks so he becomes…” is only true when first it’s in the heart in our inner person and then our mouth speaks it then we can begin to become it.   Our words can transform first our selves and the worlds we live in.   Words spoken over children, words spoken to loved ones; friends and enemies all have an effect that will produce.   Perhaps that’s why we are to forgive those who come against us not just as a thought but verbalizing our forgiveness as part of the process of transformation allowing the words sown to lodge in hearts and begin their transformation changing actions accordingly.   

In the same way words spoken to each other affect words uttered over nations and people groups also have within them a seed of change, of transformation, of molding their listeners.   Before I write any more I need to say I am not a monarchist yet our Queen has a unique impact in our nation and beyond, she does carry an authority and has a unique way of entering our homes every year on 25th December.  The clock turns each Christmas day to 3:00 PM and a long tradition across our nation begins to sit and listen to her words over the UK and beyond.   This year was no different to any other yet the content this year seemed, from a faith in Christ perspective, a different ring.   I have copied her 5 min speech, which of course can be down loaded on any computer to watch, but here is the text and her presentation of a faith in Christ over our world.   Thank you for your words may they impact 2012 and beyond in finding “…It is my prayer that on this Christmas day we might all find room in our lives for the message of the angels and for the love of God through Christ our Lord….”.    Thank you Ma;am’.

Here is the text in full of the Queen’s 2011 Christmas message, which was recorded on 9 December – before her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, was treated in hospital for a blocked coronary artery.

“In this past year my family and I have been inspired by the courage and hope we have seen in so many ways in Britain, in the Commonwealth and around the world.

We’ve seen that it’s in hardship that we often find strength from our families; it’s in adversity that new friendships are sometimes formed; and it’s in a crisis that communities break down barriers and bind together to help one another.

Families, friends and communities often find a source of courage rising up from within. Indeed, sadly, it seems that it is tragedy that often draws out the most and the best from the human spirit.

When Prince Philip and I visited Australia this year, we saw for ourselves the effects of natural disaster in some of the areas devastated by floods, where in January so many people lost their lives and their livelihoods.

We were moved by the way families and local communities held together to support each other.

Prince William travelled to New Zealand and Australia in the aftermath of earthquakes, cyclones and floods and saw how communities rose up to rescue the injured, comfort the bereaved and rebuild the cities and towns devastated by nature.

The Prince of Wales also saw first-hand the remarkable resilience of the human spirit after tragedy struck in a Welsh mining community, and how communities can work together to support their neighbours.

This past year has also seen some memorable and historic visits – to Ireland and from America.

The spirit of friendship so evident in both these nations can fill us all with hope. Relationships that years ago were once so strained have through sorrow and forgiveness blossomed into long-term friendship.

It is through this lens of history that we should view the conflicts of today, and so give us hope for tomorrow.

Of course, family does not necessarily mean blood relatives but often a description of a community, organisation or nation. The Commonwealth is a family of 53 nations, all with a common bond, shared beliefs, mutual values and goals.

It is this which makes the Commonwealth a family of people in the truest sense, at ease with each other, enjoying its shared history and ready and willing to support its members in the direst of circumstances.

They have always looked to the future, with a sense of camaraderie, warmth and mutual respect while still maintaining their individualism.

The importance of family has, of course, come home to Prince Philip and me personally this year with the marriages of two of our grandchildren, each in their own way a celebration of the God-given love that binds a family together.

For many, this Christmas will not be easy. With our armed forces deployed around the world, thousands of service families face Christmas without their loved ones at home.

The bereaved and the lonely will find it especially hard. And, as we all know, the world is going through difficult times. All this will affect our celebration of this great Christian festival.

Finding hope in adversity is one of the themes of Christmas. Jesus was born into a world full of fear. The angels came to frightened shepherds with hope in their voices: ‘Fear not’, they urged, ‘we bring you tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

‘For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Saviour who is Christ the Lord.’

Although we are capable of great acts of kindness, history teaches us that we sometimes need saving from ourselves – from our recklessness or our greed.

God sent into the world a unique person – neither a philosopher nor a general, important though they are, but a Saviour, with the power to forgive.

Forgiveness lies at the heart of the Christian faith. It can heal broken families, it can restore friendships and it can reconcile divided communities. It is in forgiveness that we feel the power of God’s love.

In the last verse of this beautiful carol, O Little Town Of Bethlehem, there’s a prayer:

O Holy Child of Bethlehem,

Descend to us we pray.

Cast out our sin

And enter in.

Be born in us today.

It is my prayer that on this Christmas day we might all find room in our lives for the message of the angels and for the love of God through Christ our Lord.

I wish you all a very happy Christmas.”

“Why O Why…”

We all have many friends that live around our lives, some pass through for a season others stay around for longer.   I begin this blog not with friendship in mind directly buy more to ask I wonder out of all those friends or acquaintances now many helped us on our journey though life.    Who has impacted me and to what extent?    It always amazes me we have friends even that don’t help and well as those that do.     Who walked through my life and is still doing so, being the imprint of wisdom through words, actions.   Who has become the fingers of God working in my life, is this not “every joint supplying”.   I opened up a meeting on Sunday with this thought “…to join my self to any one even to be joined to a people group, a church, cannot be just to attend…” Unfortunately for far to many this is so, the Christ like life degenerate to attending rather a relational joining, a felt joining, even the language used can be ever so relational but do we feel one another?   It’s much more “you are not joined until I feel you, we have not joined until we feel one another”.

I would suggest that Jesus showed this in his own life painting pictures constantly of this, glimpses of joining’s so many times.   One story comes to mind of the woman who had bled for 12 years she came not just to be in the crowed but to join herself to him.   When she did so Jesus felt it, it was not just a healing we are told Jesus felt something leave him.   She was joined he felt it and I am sure she did, a story of order, government (number 12 is always seen as government, 12 tribes, 12 apostles of the lamb, 12 disciples etc.) her life came back into order after 12 years of disorder.    This was a relational touch in story form “she touched him”, actually her  healing came not as she just brushed past his prayer blanket, in her action she joined here self to him and Jesus announced “…who touched me…”, I felt it flow from me.   Is this not “ever joint supplying”?

Back to where I began some people touch our lives and help us to put lenses on that enable us to see bigger picture to get a balance back in life, others to see the detail of all that goes around, some more to put lenses that assist us to appreciate people and circumstance, and there are those that even help us to see with future lenses making sense of past and future along with present.   Few come along and probe strategic questions on how we see , view so that we can prioritize or respond correctly.  Questions that shake but ultimate make secure our journey and the way we live that journey.

Here is my point reading today the Psalmist viewpoint as life is lived around him and as the Message translation brings home some necessary view to consider reading today.   I read a simple word yet major in its consequence if dealt with incorrectly it could shipwreck a life but if dealt with correctly will enhanced and make authentic our faith journey and intimate relationship with the Christ of God.

Psalm 106:1-3 says “…hallelujah! Thank God! And why?   Because he’s good, because his love lasts.   But who on earth can do it — declaim God’s mighty acts, broadcast all his praises?   You’re one happy man when you do what’s right, one happy woman when you form the habit of justice.

My simple word is WHY

What a great opening and a wonderful habit to get into asking WHY?   It’s not any why being asked here, it’s why are you being God focused, why are you thankful focused and why are you both together thanking God?      Don’t just do it as the pressure of the crowed or the church you belong too expectantly expect you to conform in what we call “worship” just do it.   I think God likes the question to be able to cut through the dross of performance to the real essence of you and his relationship felt with us.

The Psalm commences with Hallelujah where does that go to, what is its meaning here.     Praise it starts with in heart and action then we have an abrupt stop WHY?

One sure thing that this WHY exposes is don’t give you self to form the anchor of things that are so emotional, soul issues, gaining ego stuff or position to be included in the inner group the things of life that change and that are insecure, find the unchanging stuff.   Find a WHY that is worthwhile and a WHY that is compelling, a WHY that brings a reason and momentum an advance, that creates a sure foundation.

Praise, thanks, WHY these three may be a good combination for life’s journey a threesome, a coupling that brings a way forward.




Three legs of an expressive disciple, a disciple that turns his her heart to the Lord becomes one of these who God looks for!

That we have a WHY not to undermine but to engaged further, to become personally authentic, rather than to be part with this group I have to do it.    So I need to understand WHY and there is a way to ask my WHY’s even.   How can I ask an empowering WHY, not just a child’s frustrated why or we even a rebellious why, but a why so I can get to know me along with my motivations.

This WHY is to bring and understanding of


My environment

The overcoming power of testimony

An encounter of God

Why I do what I do that the expression comes from an inner well.

That no religion distracts or engrosses

That no unreality destroys authenticity

That we are always aware of the inner man discovering in the wilderness of inner the challenges of motive.


Should I never ask, is it productive, should it be part of my life’s cycle, do I have the ware all on managing asking the question.

WHY are you doing what you’re doing, find the answer the Father will bring it, WHY is a powerful a belonging word, it really will cause you to feel your relationship when WHY’s are asked that we will feel one another as we bring form to our WHY’s of life and faith.

What we love, we love to think of.

“I love you”, three most powerful words in our vocabulary, simple words yet so much impact.     It has been said that’s these three simple words that roll of the tongue so easily deal with a persons Identity, Integrity, and Intimacy.   They really do not amount to simple Hollywood lines, to move an audience at a pinnacle point in a moving film, when some one departs a life or loses a life.     What kind of world would we truly belong to if we all realised to say “I Love You” is impactive, powerful and we would invest ourselves into the statement.   These three words the hold three fundamental “I” would be transformational.

For this is when the power of our words is rally seen when we invest out identity to say I love you, it’s who I am.   When we take our integrity and stand by our word to the you we direct our word too, and finally when we invest all our intimacy, which is our inner ways made open, our vulnerability laid on the line, out honesty to say love.   How much better a world it would be?    We may not say I love you so often but when we would it would be invested with so much of you, God, and me.   Now consider this when God says he loves you and me his intimacy, integrity and identity he invest and directs it us, so much of himself given when he said he “…loved the world…” when he said ”…I will never leave you…” when he sounded across the heavens that he loves you, when he sent his love manifestation the Son to this would he invested into “I Love You”.

I started with a statement “What we love, we love to think of”, we see this so simple outlined with a love struck teenager, not only a teenager but anyone that when they love some you we tease “they’re off their food” we say, they are pre-occupied with some one in every conversation simple “what we love, we love to think of”.    The Psalmist in 119:97 (Message) “Oh, how I love all you’ve revealed; I reverently ponder it all the daylong” the love of the revelation of the Father is declared here.   I must admit I too would love to say this as there is nothing like scaling the highest of the revelation of God.   This revelations that we scale has one focus “…in the last days reveled in His Son…” Hebrews 1 O how I love all you’ve reveled he says with so much passion in the words of his love and so much so it fills my day all daylong, my pondering, my wondering, my though, my view all down to you.

There is an object and it is the personhood of God, Christ is that which has been revelled. The revelation is always the Fathers Son.   The all is Christ, the revelation is Christ, it’s personal personhood revelation he revels in.   This is the revelation I love, the revelled word.

This love of revelation is beyond a Bible Study, Never have there been so many tools available for serious Bible study, and we are grateful for them. However, the Word of God is unlike any other book: we must be on good terms with the Author if we are to learn from what He has written. Our relationship to the Lord is determined by our relationship to His will, and that is determined by how we relate to His Word. The encouragement here is to go beyond the dos and don’ts of law to an appeal for a revelatory encounter, it’s heart knowledge of a person and the living Word, and it means being taught by God (v. 102).

Here are some practical way to deepen our enjoyment of the reveled word and to encounter once again this living breathing revelation.  

Love His Word and meditate on it (vv. 97–100). We enjoy thinking about people and activities that we love, simple meditation means loving by pondering on him and his Word and allowing its truths to penetrate our hearts. (48, 113, 127, 159, 165, 167; and 1:2.)

Allowing our minds and hearts are so open to the Holy Spirit and we are ready to be led by him at ever moment of the He can remind us of the Word when we need it and give us fresh understanding in the new challenges we face.

Note this there are many ways to learn truth.

We can learn from our enemies in the encounters of life (v. 98), From teachers in the explanations of life from books and lessons (v. 99)

From these who have life experience and know the principles that work (v. 100).

We have many in the scriptures that were mentored and learned from others Elijah & Elisha, Joshua learned from serving with Moses, from the battles that he fought, and from the experiences, good and bad, that came to his life. But the most important thing he did was to meditate on the Word (Josh. 1:1–9), because his meditation helped him to test what he had learned in the other three “classrooms” and to put it all together into one balanced whole. God shares His truth with babes (Luke 10:21) and those who are humble enough to receive it (1 Cor. 1:18–2:8).

By obeying His Word (vv. 101–102). A true learner and one where the revelation of God lives in is not a person with a big head, full of all sorts of knowledge, but one who has an obedient heart and loves to do God’s will. If the Bible tells us something is wrong, we stay off that path. If God tells us something is right, we do not abandon it. “Obedience is the organ of spiritual knowledge” (F. W. Robertson) and Obedience is the only true worship not singing songs.

Enjoy His Word (vv. 103–104). Honey would be the sweetest thing the psalmist could taste. However, the Word contains both sweetness and bitterness, and we must learn to receive both (19:10; 104:34; Prov. 16:24; Ezek. 2:9–3:15; Rev. 10). Samson got into trouble because of eating defiled honey from the carcass of a lion (Judg. 14:1–18). He was a Nazarite and was never to touch a dead body (Num. 6), so he defiled both himself and his parents, for Jewish people had to avoid dead animals (Num. 5:2; 9:10).

God’s Word is pure, not defiled, and gives us the sweetness and energy we need to obey His commands. A child of God feeds on the Scriptures and enjoys the sweet taste of truth. This is what it means to go beyond Bible study.

What we love, we love to think of.

A good man carries his Bible with him in his head and in his heart, the better furnished we are with answers to temptation.

Oh, how I love all you’ve revealed; I reverently ponder it all the daylong.

The Condition

“Let there be light” is a part of the opening declaration of our Heavenly father, giving us some understanding of who, He is.    As we begin with this statement there is so much to draw from it.   While travelling to Sri Lanka, a number of the ministries we work and labour with on that beautiful Island, call me the “Genesis man” as they say I return back to Genesis especially chapter 1 so many times in my ministry.   My only defense is, if I require one that Genesis is the seed-bed of all Gods working, that within creation all the themes and workings of God are there in seed from.

I must admit I love Genesis 1 greatly, it sends a buzz through me, as I read and consider, it comes alive as I read the explosion of life and vegetation, I feel the exhilaration of the Father as he spoke and it happened.   “……bang…” feel the joy of the creation, the Holy Spirits’ joy, the manifestation of “…the Kingdom of God is…righteousness, peace and joy…” so the creation is full of joy!   Recently I saw a different slant on the Hebrew word for OBEY which is actually is to “keep intact” I think that is magnificent.   It opens up a whole other facet of obedience, keeping in tact!   I must not get way laid into that avenue at present may be another time but to look at the declarations of God in the “Let there be’s” of Genesis 1 as being the father speaking and in order to “keep in tact” with the declaration, it was.   Genesis becomes a canvas of “keeping in tact” the word, the spoken word of God, and the obedience to a declared utterance from the Father.

Genesis opens up with God, nothing more nothing less than God, for there was a time when there was God, there was no sound, actually no expression of God.   Genesis 1 heralds the first expression of God to us for out of…?…?…?…?, I am lost for words, out of where?   You see we are challenged, with our vocabulary, to communicate accurately the actual fullness of truth.   We are tempted to say that God, out of nothing, created, but we cannot do that, as there was nothing seen but everything was in an unseen condition, in God himself.    God had not given expression to himself prior to that time.   Creation opens up the expression of his love, we say in John 3:16 “God so loved the world he sent his Son”, in other words the Christ is the expression of his love.    Into time came the first sound a “…let…” the first expression in a seen dimension and this expression was the word, the first sound was the word of God the Son!     That is why he is the center of the Fathers attraction; His goal to fill all things with is Christ.    It is said in Hebrews’ that God is happy to dwell in bodily form in the Christ, as he is the first expression of God.  The expression of the Father had so much of his essence that it exploded into being and created, and all change came about!    Everything is measured by Christ, in us and in all we do, he has become the “horizon” the very line of God for all things.  Not our business of church or our activity by how much of this first expression, the word, the Christ is found in all our endeavours and lives.

This same expression is towards us today, his Son the word of God is here, he has been given to us, and with Him, the same ability to change things, the same expressions of transformation, God has invested in the people of God today.   The scripture encourages us come boldly to God, and become the expression of God, speaking and expressing him, according to his will.

More than this, truly what I wanted to write about is what happened when “…let there be light…” was expressed!   Things changed, darkness became altered as light made its impact.  Unfortunately for us light has become an object, it is a bright orb in the sky – the sun; it’s a bulb hanging in the middle of a room, lamps along roadways, a hand-held torch or just a simple candle – light has become an object.   Let me first say here, that we are dealing with not just light, but the very essence of God himself, as I read and understand God has two essences, light and love, and both are given to us.   We are to love one another “that the world might know” and we are to become “the light on the hill” (Matt 5) we are to become the extension of the essence of God in our world as we Restore it and bring it back to gods original intent, along with all of creation and the cosmos.

The Light that is introduced to us here is not an object, interestingly, the sun and moon had not yet been created as the objects of light, but here light is the very nature of God coming forth and making the changes and advances.  Sun and moon came three days later in the creative order, creation returns to this light filled setting in Revelation 21, 22 when the light once again is not dependent on an object but on a presence.    So if the objects of light had not yet come, what are we dealing with here is “ a condition”, the condition, the being, the very nature, the very essence of God.     Let there be light was the introduction of a condition and the condition was God.

Ever since this time, every dawning has been a re-enactment a reminder that the condition of God has come into the world.   Have you noticed how better you feel following a sunny day, or how much in general people are happier having been in the sun.   Some people suffer with a condition of depression if they do not get enough sun.   it is a picture to us of a realty that the condition of God is  anew day, the let there be light of  dawn is a reminder that the condition of God has come to us.

Here is where the rubber meets the road, we have been given a gift of the love and light of God, we have become the sons of Light, people of the day, have we not, this light on the hill.   We have been invaded with the condition of God, not a conditioning but the very nature of God.    This condition that dwells in us is to dawn from us.   Our task and goal is to take the condition of light into the places of our world and let the condition come.   Practically how then, through our words, actions, love, character, etc.

The light is the condition of God that will fill all, this is the Christ of God, we are people of the light we are immersed, baptized into the condition of God until his light dwells in all.

Genesis 1 brings a condition into our vocabulary not just an object of light, dispelling the darkness is bringing the condition of the Father to our world, we are created to be creation, Genesis people dispersing the condition of God.   If light dwells in us the condition of God dwells in us, is this not his image and likeness in us?

How does that impact you?   I am a child of a condition, O, boy my self-esteem changes, I bear the condition of God in me and so do you, light bearer!