Tending to the Vineyard
“…my own vineyard I have neglected.” -Song of Solomon 1:6
The beloved that Solomon was going to marry was a dark woman. She worked hard for many years in the vineyards of her mother and brothers. Though she was very beautiful she was a bit conscious about the darkness of her skin. In this poem she asked that others would not stare at her because of what the sun had done to her. She told them that the reason this had happened was because she had neglected her own vineyard (meaning her body) while attending to the vineyards (grape vineyards) of her family, but the time had now come for her to attend to her own vineyard (her body) as her wedding day approached. Today we might call this girl time or spa time.
There is a great spiritual truth in this text about self-care. It is very easy for us to neglect our own vineyards while caring for the vineyards of others. The Lord calls us to love our neighbors but this is not something we can do well unless we also devote time to care for our own souls. If you do not first take care of your own vineyard you will burn out and not love well. The way we do this is we build space in our lives for consistent worship, prayer, and the reading of God’s Word. When we do this God will make us beautiful and equip to tend to the needs of others in our lives. Be encouraged!