Thought of the Week

“Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might…” Ecclesiastes 9:10

The story is told of a much beloved bishop living near the coast of France where white wine is an art form, was given other responsibilities in a different region of the country. The townspeople were saddened to learn of the promotion, however, they were gladden that he had made such an impact on their lives during his stay.

The mayor called together a town council meeting to ask what kind of gift should be given to the departing bishop, to help him remember them by. One suggestion after another was given but none seemed appropriate. Then, finally a marvelous suggestion came to the fore. Why not each man give some of his fine wine from his vineyard to a common cask? Then, and thereafter, whenever the bishop would have some wine, he could reflect on the townspeople that loved him so dearly. Yes, a very fine idea! Let us do it! And all ran off to their farms to prepare for the festival and to give of his share of wine.

At the festival, during the pomp and gaiety, each man quietly went to the large oaken cask and poured his contribution through the hole and into the common offering. One by one each man did this until the cask could hold no more. With much pomp and speech giving, the mayor presented the bishop the cask, saying that everyone hoped that whenever he tasted the wine, he would remember these fine people. The bishop graciously accepted the gift, and promised he would do just that every time he drank from his flagon.

Pouring out a glass of wine, and lifting the glass to his lips the bishop toasted the fine people of the region, and their generosity. But when he drank of it, he quickly realized that it was only water! You see, everyone had thought that his contribution would surely not be missed, and so, gave water instead of his white wine.

We all are important. No matter how insignificant one may think their job to be, your contribution is important and necessary. We cannot function as well, without your input, your care, your dedication to the wellbeing of this hospital. If it wasn’t for you, we would not be who we are. You matter to us.
The flip side of this story is also true. We all are expecting you to give what is expected. We are counting on you. We are depending on you to give your “white wine”, instead of “water”. Admittedly, it is hard to give, when it seems that no one is giving their fair share. It is rough to be the one that goes the “extra mile”, especially when it appears that no one else is helping and the easy way would be to “let someone else do it”. It has to start with each one of us. And possibly your contribution may give impetus to us all to share the load with you.

I would challenge you to give your “wine” in all experiences of life, here at work and at home. As the scripture says: ” Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might…” Ecclesiastes 9:10. Have a great week!

Jan Leffers