«I went past the field of a sluggard, past the vineyard of someone who has no sense; thorns had come up everywhere, the ground was covered with weeds, and the stone wall was in ruins» (Proverbs 24:30, 31, NIV).
Some time ago I visited Saint-Émilion, a small town near Bordeaux (France). In ancient times the Romans planted vineyards in the area where the town now sits and turned it into a prosperous region. Later, monks were in charge of the products of the vineyards. Today you can see churches with a fascinating romantic style and breathe the extraordinary medieval air of the place.
Having a vineyard in that area of France is a great opportunity. People try to make good use of any space to plant a grapevine, even the yards in their homes. It’s very strange to see empty lots or unused spaces in such a generous land. Of course, all the vineyards are well taken care of. Can you imagine the owner of a vineyard being careless about his land?
In today’s verse, King Solomon refers to the importance of not being careless in life and making good use of opportunities that come up. The boy in the story has a field! That means he has an opportunity. Owning a vineyard is being in a favorable situation. Many people have few opportunities in life, but this young man can consider himself very lucky. The problem is he doesn’t know what to do with the huge opportunity in front of him. Actually, we all have great opportunities within our reach to carry out important projects.
The bad thing is there are many talented people whose bad attitude and carelessness turn their great opportunities into terrible burdens. The circumstances are not the problem, instead ies the attitude we face them with. Being irresponsible kills the best project and destroys the promising future of very capable people.
In this world we all have a vineyard. Life is full of possibilities, be they a few or many. Now is the time to make good use of the favorable circumstances we have. But in particular, youth is a time in which opportunities abound. Don’t waste them! Don’t be complacent or let the best years of your life go by! Don’t allow bad habits such as laziness or indolence take over your life and doom you to poverty and deprivation.
Ask the Lord today to help you acquire habits that will allow you to make good use of your opportunities.