|Okanagan Valley B.C.|
by Marcia Lee Laycock
Green. It lay in waves of even rows cascading down the slope toward the wide blue lake. We could not see the fruit buried among the leaves but we knew it was there – large clusters of ripe, luscious red and white grapes. The vineyards of the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia Canada are becoming famous for a bounty of sweet fruit.
As we drove by, a verse in proverbs came to mind: “She considers a field and buys it; from her profits she plants a vineyard” (Prov. 31:16, NKJV).
I found myself wishing I had the resources necessary to buy any of the beautiful, bountiful fields I saw as we drove along Okanagan Lake. I started to feel a little sorry for myself. Poor me, I’ll never live in a place like this. Poor me, I’ll never own a house like these. I confess it took an effort of will to stop myself but I managed to rethink that premise and realize that I too have purchased a field. All of us have, and it is a field of great value.
All of us have chosen a way of living, a course for our lives to take, and no matter what that field looks like, no matter if the profits are large or small, we have a responsibility to do what the woman in proverbs 31 did. We need to use the profits wisely by planting a vineyard that will flourish with fruit from which others can benefit.
Perhaps you’re thinking your profits have been too small to be of much use, but not all profit comes in a financial package. I recently received a statement from the publisher of my first novel, One Smooth Stone. He is still trying to recoup the advance I was given for that book and I feel badly about that. But that same day I received an email from a friend who had given One Smooth Stone to a prison program in Florida. The prisoners, some of whom have no other form of entertainment other than books, have been writing reviews of the novels she has brought to them. Those letters have shown me the fruit of my vineyard. Hearing what my words have meant to those people, how the story has encouraged them and given them hope again, is a profit that is priceless, a profit that will last.
As writers of faith, we have chosen a field of words. Whether we are writing poems or novels, articles or songs, we are planting a vineyard with our words, a vineyard that will provide nourishment, encouragement and perhaps even redemption to those who read our work. It is a vineyard that will reach into eternity.