"With great power comes great responsibility." -Uncle Ben, Spiderman's father figure.
One of the people I forgot to thank was Father Dwight Ezop. He blessed the grape cuttings last week. This is not an exact quote of what he said, it captures the thoughts his blessing triggered in me.
To "bless" something is to mentally recognize that it might be needed for special purposes.
Nearly all items can be used for good or for ill, even the most pedestrian of items.
Consider a hammer: It can be used to build a home or to forge tools from hot iron or it can be used to smash or destroy.
Or consider a towel: It can clean and bind wounds, sooth a fevered brow or wipe sweat from blinded eyes, or it can be twisted into a whip or used to gag somebody.
|It seems likely that David had panpipes when he composed the Psalms. They are almost impossible to make without a knife.|
Knives can be used to cut food, to protect one's self or carve useful items. They can also be used to intimidate and victimize others.
The hammer, the towel and the weapon don't choose to be used for good or used for evil. That is chosen by the one who carries it.
Even instruments of torture and death can become symbols of hope and salvation when the tortured chooses to let God be the roots and we be His branches.
To "bless" something is to help us remain mindful that WE CHOOSE.
Grapes and wine are central to some of the most beautiful passages in the Bible.
Let the wine made from these grapes bring joy, not sorrow. May it forge bonds of fellowship and not foster hurtful words that cause injury. May it bring comfort and never become a tool of the deceiver such that it causes us to forget our God-given mission, whatever that mission might be.
We pray in the name of God the Father, Jesus His son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.