Winter Vineyard (Thoughts on March)

A friend and I were discussing some difficult things recently when I heard myself say, “There’s a lot going on in a winter vineyard.” I can tell you that living in a county with 50,000 acres of leafless vineyards might make you stop and think about that a bit.

By the month of March, the most crucial work of the vineyard (no, not harvesting – pruning) has been done. Not only have the vines been pruned, but the canes have been moved into heaps and mulched.  The past is the past.  Those canes have done their job.

And now the vines sleep. These vines – dark, bare, and seemingly lifeless – sleep all over hills and valleys, and along riverbeds and roadsides everywhere in Sonoma County.  There are no tractors, pickers, or pruners anywhere to be seen.  (Well, okay, the wild mustard is blooming.)

How in the world does this area produce 200,000 tons of grapes each year from those sticks?  It is because the farmer knows his vines. He hires pruners who know vines. Cuts are made carefully, strategically.  In which direction should this cane grow? The angle of the sun on that particular block of vines is considered.  Heavier growth is desirable here, thinner growth there. It is exceedingly precise, with quality of fruit always in mind.

The vines, naked and sorry-looking as they appear, are not really in trouble. There is a lot going on, deep in the healthy interior.  The mysterious processes of life will stir and vine-blood will flow again.

When Jesus said, “I am the vine, you are the branches,” this was what He was talking about.  If it’s wintertime in the vineyard of your life, the prayer and obedience you have been faithfully practicing will pay off.  After this seemingly lifeless season, a surprising harvest will be produced in your life.

Fact is, you can’t bear fruit without pruning and rest.  Any farmer will assure you of that.

Are you trusting God that His good purposes are being worked out in your life – right now?

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One response to this post.

  1. Love this, just beautiful Sister Deb!

    Reply

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