Then Jesus told this parable: “A man had a fig-tree, planted in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it, but did not find any. So he said to the man who took care of the vineyard. ‘For three years now I’ve been coming to look for fruit on this fig-tree and haven’t found any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the soil?’
‘Sir’, the man replied, ‘leave it alone for one more year, and I’ll dig round it and fertilise it. If it bears fruit next year, fine! If not, then cut it down.’” (Luke 13:6-9/NIV).
This is another post on patience. The owner of the vineyard and the fig-tree had clear expectations. He wanted his fig-tree to bear fruit. He had been patient so far. He had given the tree three years. Now for three years the tree had not yielded any fruit.
The other person, the man taking care of the vineyard was even more patient, – and he was of a practical disposition. He suggested giving the fruitless tree one more year. During this year he wanted to do all that was in his power to help that the tree should bear fruit.
You might just throw some fertiliser on the surface round about a tree. This man intended to dig round the tree and then fertilise it. The fertiliser would then be closer to the roots of the tree.
Now as for situations that call for patience I would like to share two suggestions:
- At times it may help to rethink your expectations. Perhaps your expectations are unrealistic or unnecessary. In the landowner’s case it was clear he had a fig-tree for the sole purpose that it should bear fruit. He did not need the tree to provide some shade for the vineyard as vine likes a lot of sun.
- There may be something you can do to enhance the likelihood of your expectations coming true. Once again and with utmost care do all that is in your power.