The Vine weekend was a real blessing. We stayed in Ebenezer House at Hebron Hall in Dinas Powys which worked well being so close as some had to go back for a few hours for their weekend jobs. During the weekend there were no arguments, loads of laughing and for some, very little sleep. We had a seminar on Friday evening, two on Saturday one of which included communion and time of worship with an open time on Sunday morning.
In all the seminars we were thinking about different aspects of being a team and on Saturday we focused on gifts within the team. Jackie led the session and she began by asking everyone to take one of the tests used by employers to gain insight into how an individual behaves within a team environment. The results were funny and surprisingly accurate, and they showed the diversity of the group. We then went on to look at gifts from a biblical perspective both ‘spiritual’ and ‘natural’; all good gifts come from the Lord and are given for a purpose. To bring glory to God, build up the church and share the good news of Jesus with others.
During the worship, I started to think about a painting produced by a great artist. When viewed too closely, the picture makes very little sense, it just seems to be a lot of blobs and strokes of the brush, but when viewed from the right distance the beauty is startling. Every blob and stroke is placed there by the great artist and adds to the whole picture. The church is like the picture, we are made up of different people with different gifts and abilities and even when we feel unimportant like a blob of paint, we have a purpose as the Lord Jesus builds his church.
Some years ago Rolf Harris the Australian entertainer (who was not on the weekend) would appear on TV and paint in what looked like a slapdash manner, the painting appeared to make no sense. He would often say “Can you see what it is yet?” I never could see what it was but eventually as he added more paint, it would make sense and the image would be revealed. When we look at the church locally or worldwide, we are tempted to ask “can you see what it is yet? Jesus said “I will build my church” and one day it will be revealed in all its beauty.
“It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal.” (Revelation 21:11).