The Garden Of Our Soul
A pleasant vineyard, sing ye of it. I the Lord do keep it; I will water it every moment: lest any hurt it, I will keep it night and day. — Isa 27:2-3
The vineyard and its Divine Keeper. God’s redeemed children are here compared to a Vineyard. We remember also our Lord’s references to the Vineyard in Mat 21:33-41 and John 15. God our Father is the Husbandman or Keeper, watching, watering, and guarding always. There is no anger in His heart against us, but against our sins, and He is ever battling with these, as the gardener digs up the weeds and burns them in the bonfire.
God’s moment-by-moment care of us is our one hope. The dry winds of this world are always parching the tender verdure of our inner life making the soil hard and impenetrable. We shrivel and wither beneath the sun of prosperity, but God is ever seeking to water us with His grace.
Sometimes it is by the mist—“There went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground” (Gen 2:6). Thus it was in Eden, and so it is in our experience. The mystery of life, its uncertainty, our sense of impotence and ignorance, the withdrawal of our beloved ones within the envelopment of the unseen, the strange sense of incomprehensible enigma—these are some of the mists that help to soften our character.
Sometimes by the dew—“I will be as the dew unto Israel.” On clear nights the air deposits its moisture in dewdrops. How beautiful it is in the spring morning! In the tropics it is profuse, so that Gideon was able to wring a bowlful of water from the fleece which he had spread out! Yet how gently it distils, not a flower stalk, however fragile, is broken. So the gracious influences of the Holy Spirit gather on our souls and refresh us. We know not whence or how, but we are sweeter, gentler, tenderer for His beneficent care. The sun does not scorch us, the heat does not exhaust.
Let us enter into a holy fellowship with God in His antagonism to whatever is unworthy and evil in our lives, taking hold of His strength, and being at peace with Him. Then shall we be blossom and bud, and become His pleasant vineyard; and fill the world with refreshing fruit. “Thou shalt be like a watered garden.” “By their fruits ye shall know them.”
Forbid, O Heavenly Father, that we should lose the freshness, fertility and beauty which Thou canst maintain in hearts which are open to Thee. May we be like a watered garden. Amen.