The Master’s Garden- Excerpt

I am so excited about the message of my 4th book, The Master’s Garden: An Allegory of Abiding in the Vine, that I just had to give you a taste!  It has just been released. So I am including the beginning of chapter 1. You can read the first few chapters in the “Look inside” feature on Amazon.

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Chapter 1 A Strange World

Imagine. A world containing very unusual plants that can think, see, hear, and speak—a kind of plant-animal hybrid, so to speak. This world, called Plantasia, was beautiful—filled with all types of plants from the tiniest flower to the towering giant redwood.

The Master Gardener created this strange world for His pleasure. He was good, loving, powerful, all-wise, and very patient. Most of all, though, He was pure and perfect.

Now the Gardener loved all the diverse vegetation in this world which He had made, and wanted nothing more than for each plant to love Him in return. He gave these unique plants the ability to choose whether to come under His loving care or remain in the wild and live on their own.

When plants agreed to come under the Gardener’s care, they were grafted onto the roots of the Vine and became permanently His. Now this Vine was no ordinary plant. He came directly from the Master Gardener Himself and there was a special bond between Them. Their union enabled embedded plants to connect with the Gardener in a personal way.

Plants belonging to the Master Gardener thrived under His tender care. He knew their exact needs. He abundantly supplied them with light and Living Water and fed them with His Word. His Living Water carried nutrient truths up to all parts of the plant, helping them to absorb the vital minerals. This life-giving liquid not only sustained them but also promoted extraordinary growth.

In addition to these three essential ingredients of light, water, and food, the Gardener used other measures to help His plants flourish. He pruned, divided, transplanted, and sprayed as needed. He did this out of His lovingkindness; longing for each one to achieve its full potential.

The duty of each individual plant belonging to the Gardener was to grow and be beautiful in His eyes and to reflect His wonderful qualities. In order to accomplish this, they needed the strength of the Vine. If they tried to grow roots outside the Vine, ugly and distorted growth resulted. The more they lived their lives through the Vine, the more they flourished. How much and how quickly they developed into what they were meant to be largely depended upon their willingness to cooperate with their Keeper.

Each plant was designed to reveal the character of the Gardener differently. Some were grand, like the mighty oak. Others were very prolific, like the squash. And then there were those who were just small and dainty, like the lily of the valley. Each was uniquely fashioned, cultivated, and valued by the Master Gardener. All brought Him distinct pleasure as they displayed His handiwork and fulfilled His plan for them.

Together, all the Gardener’s plants showed His greatness and majesty. It was a sight to behold! Their beauty was so appealing that it drew wild plants to want to know the wonderful Gardener and be placed under His nurturing care.

However, there was an even more important reason why all plants needed to belong to the Gardener…

In the beginning everything was perfect. In this newly created world, the Master Gardener planted two individuals into a beautiful garden and told them to enjoy growing there. They were instructed that their roots could go anywhere, except for one small area.

So they flourished and frequently enjoyed the presence of the Gardener as He walked among them—until one dreadful day when everything changed.

You see, the Master had an evil enemy. He used to be one of the Gardener’s helpers but wanted to usurp the Gardener, so he was kicked out of the garden. This enemy wanted nothing more than to get revenge and sought to destroy this perfect garden. On that fateful day, he tricked the two plants and enticed them to penetrate their roots into forbidden territory. Little did they know it was contaminated. They became infected with a deadly disease which eventually spread throughout the entire garden and the rest of Plantasia. But the good Gardener couldn’t leave them in this dying state. He had to make a way to rescue His precious plants.

Therefore, He planted His special Vine into the world, One that had the very same qualities as the Master Gardener. The pure and perfect Vine grew and experienced all the same difficulties as any plant does—and even more. Yet He grew exactly as the Master Gardener wanted, and pleased Him in every way.


Sorry to leave you hanging like that, but I kind of did that on purpose!

So until next time, my friends, if you want to learn how to abide in Christ the Vine I know that this crazy allegory will help you! Now available on Amazon at greatly reduced prices in print, kindle and audio-book formats.

And because I really want you to have a copy of The Master’s Garden, I am also offering 3 FREE bonuses for a limited time onlyincluding a complete and unabridged copy of the classic Hinds’ Feet on High Places. Click on the link below to learn more.

The Master’s Garden 3 Bonus Offer

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Getting the RIGHT Perspective of the Fruit of the Spirit

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But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (Gal 5:22-23)

I want the Fruit of the Spirit, don’t you? I want to have all the love, joy, and peace that I can. But come to find out —I had it backwards!

A tree produces fruit to benefit others, not for itself. Oh my! My focus unknowingly was on myself. This fruit is not for me, the bearer, but for God and others.

“This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.” (Jn 15:8)

It is more obvious that the last 6 aspects of this fruit list are for others. However, even there we must be careful.

Do I want to be patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle, and self-controlled so that I can feel good about myself and that others will think highly of me? Or do I want the fruit of the Spirit truly for God’s glory and the benefit of others?

Tough questions!

It always boils down to motives; to what’s in our hearts. I certainly got pricked with these questions. But knowing the real truth will set you and me free. How else could we change our thinking? We need the Holy Spirit to point out our misunderstandings. I want a rich bountiful harvest, don’t you?

Here’s where we need to change our thinking:

1. Have the Right Goal

  • Joy should not be the goal. That’s putting our desire for joy before God (i.e. an idol). But seeking God first will lead to that joy.

…You will fill me with joy in your presence…. (Ps 16:11)

  • The goal should not be to have peace in our lives, but to be at peace with God. Then the peace of God will follow as a result of being right with our holy Creator (Rom 5:1, Phil 4:7, 9).
  • Love should be the goal—not to receive love, but rather give love to God and others (the 2 greatest commandments).

2. Have the Right Source

We don’t produce this fruit—He does. Its origin is divine.

Spiritual fruit develops by abiding and having faith in Christ.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing….” (Jn 15:5)

“It is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves. I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these…. (John 14:10-12)

Fruit is the evidence of what’s inside. Therefore, bearing spiritual fruit is to show others the evidence of God working in us, proving that He exists and cares. God wants to be known and uses willing vessels like you and me to display His glory. 

Once we have the correct perspective, we will experience what we want in the way of love, joy, and peace. It’s a byproduct of believing, obeying, and living in Christ Jesus.

I probably have stretched your mind. Good! The Holy Spirit will help you understand these spiritual mind-blowers. Let God teach you and transform your way of thinking so you can produce bountiful fruit that will last.

“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last.” (Jn 15:16)


Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®.  NIV®.  Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica.  All rights reserved worldwide.

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