Two topics we feel like the Lord is really breathing on right now are those of fear and new wine. Our hunch is this isn’t just something He’s stirring in us, rather these are hot topics He's passionate about for His children around the world. We’d love to hear your thoughts on these two areas, let us know what the Lord has been showing you.
We keep being drawn back to the scripture, ‘For God has not given me a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind.’ (2 Tim 1:7). I feel like this year the Lord wants to rip fear off His kids. Fear is the thing that seeks to keep us bound, keep us believing we don’t posses that which is already ours, keeps us from moving forward. There is such an urgency on this. Every fear must go: fear of failure, fear of other’s opinions, fear of missing out….The Lord has even had us speak/shout/pray this scripture out loud, engaging our words with faith, till we feel a shift in our spirits. God is ferocious about protecting the truth and identity of who we are – and fear can’t stay!
I love the new Hillsong song: New Wine! It’s my prayer right now. It was also a prophecy released over Conrad and I by the beautiful Margaret Stunt, before leaving Singleton.
Out of interest, I looked up how to prepare a new wine barrel to hold wine. It undergoes some intense treatment! Open air drying of the wood can take 3-5 years. To achieve even more dramatic structural and chemical changes in the timber, barrels can be ‘toasted’, where the inside surface is set over a fire. A constructed barrel then needs to be ‘swollen’ for a good length of time. This is done by filling the barrel with water, causing the wood to swell, tightening all the joints and removing any impurities that might affect flavour. To finish off a barrel, some wine makers believe in protecting the exterior wood with linseed oil.
The Lord is preparing us for increase in understanding, influence and significance. This is a process that can’t be rushed, it will take time. There may be times of intense fire, intense presence. It will involve being washed, filled to overflow where all my thoughts are tested and impurities are removed. God says, “I’ll pour pure water over you and scrub you clean. I’ll give you a new heart, put a new spirit in you” (Ezek 36:25). He wants to clothe us with His presence, like a protective oil, that seals us to hold more of His increase