My “mentor” has said that he is a vine and that I am a branch, grafted into that vine. He also said that he wants me to bear much fruit (vine-fruit = grapes?). He also has a reputation as being a pretty good winemaker. This same person has been known to lead his followers into some pretty nasty weather.

Sometimes I wonder what effect the storms of life might have on my character development. “Is this difficult experience able to produce any worthwhile, lasting fruit? Or is this just something to endure until it is over with?” I sometimes ask myself.

Well, over the weekend we had an opportunity to visit one of the many wineries in the Finger Lakes region. This particular winery, Keuka Lake Vineyards, had something that I’ve never seen before. In their offerings for tastings they were offering two different years of the exact same wine. They had a 2012 Cabernet Franc and a 2013 Cabernet Franc. In their little write-ups of each of these they explained that the only difference was the warmer weather that the region experienced in 2012. You can literally see the difference between the two vintages:


They had different tastes as well.

This got me to thinking about the effect of “storms” on our lives. It was readily apparent that the wines that came from these two different years were markedly different. To think that these differences were caused only by the different weather conditions between 2012 and 2013 was stunning to me. It also made me appreciate that when God brings varying conditions into my life, he knows what he is doing. He is in the process of forming just the right fruit that he wants to have for his purposes.

I found that reassuring and affirming of my faith, somehow.