I'm far from a wine connoisseur. Okay, I'm about as far from it as you can get. I have never had more than a sip of wine and even that I could barely swallow. To me, wine is pretty unappealing. The smell does nothing for me. The taste is repulsive. Maybe I just haven't had the "good stuff" but somehow I don't think that would change my feelings on the substance. I simply don't think I'm a wine-o. Now, on the other hand, a coffee connoisseur might be more my style - but that is beside the point.
So, what is the point, you may be asking? The point is this: I may not have a taste for wine, but I wouldn't mind sharing some of its characteristics. I want to get better with time, more refined with age, more desirable as I add years to my life.
I want to age like a fine wine.
There is no denying the truth of the matter, I have not reached my peak. I still have so far to go. I am like that bottle of wine, sitting on the shelf, putting in its time before its cork is popped off with a thrill of anticipation for what lies behind the glass exterior. It has potential on the shelf, but time must be spent in wait. If the bottle is opened now it will never reach that potential. It might taste alright but it won't be anything spectacular. It won't be worth celebrating. It will just be the addition to a meal, an accompaniment to the main event.
But if it puts in time on the shelf the pay off can be something great. The wine can be worth a ceremonial opening of the bottle, swishing of the glass and sharing of the liquid gold. The day the bottle is enjoyed can be one of celebration. A meal won't even be needed to make it an event, the wine itself will be exciting enough to draw a crowd.
The time of waiting for the wine to reach its peak is anything but exciting. There is no thrill in the waiting. You can't see the aging process taking place that is producing an appealing taste within the bottle. All that you can see from the outside is a layer of dust forming around the glass, covering up the label. The bottle begins to blend into the shelf with the gray layer of filth that covers its surface. The appeal is no where to be found.
Until the right year is reached.
When the label is rubbed clean and the date can be seen, proving the long aging process that this particular bottle has endured, there is a rebirth of excitement for the once neglected shelf dweller. It once wasn't worth a passing glance. Now all who will partake do so with great anticipation. Finally, the years of waiting will show their worth.
For now, I too must sit on the shelf. The work being done is so subtle, unassuming, that no one would give a second look. There is no crowd watching and eagerly waiting. There are no flashing lights with a countdown or a preview to entice what is to come. The process is quiet...sometimes lonely.
But there is an exciting future in store. When the time comes to be moved off the shelf there will much more worth celebrating then there was years earlier, when the time of waiting began. Just like a fine wine, age will prove to enhance and strengthen all the positive attributes that were once untapped potential. There is no pomp or circumstance in the waiting. There is no show. But when the cork is popped on this life there will be a marvelous creation just waiting to be revealed.