Faith and Farmers

IMG_5387

So many things in life take faith. In the years I have been married to a farmer I can testify to the fact that farming is one of those things.

Every year my husband diligently heads off to the field to prepare and plant the crop he hopes to harvest in the fall. Some years that works out really well…..and other years not quite so good.

This past year we experienced some of the worst flooding on our fields that we have ever seen. We watched that water come up, go down, come up and again, very slowly go down the second time.

My farmer husband patiently (sort of) waited for the fields to dry enough to get back in them. He would walk out to the bottoms and stand in the middle of brown dead corn. He never said much when he came back…..he just waited and wondered what the best course of action would be for those fields.

This past week I witnessed an act of faith. I saw him once again haul out the disk and planter, prepare that bottom piece of field and plant it. It is rather late in the season but he has faith that there will be something that can be harvested from that piece. He is a quiet witness to perseverance, hope and faith.

I am reminded that we have never experienced a total crop failure like those farmers did in the 30’s. I often wonder how they kept hope alive when the rains never came.

It is a good lesson for me to learn…..that things are probably never quite as hopeless as it looks at the first look. That with a little patience and perseverance things might turn around….that sometimes the only thing you have is faith and the hope that faith brings……and that is enough.

“A farmer has to be an optimist 
or he wouldn’t still be a farmer.”

Will Rodgers

 

“He makes grass grow for the cattle,
and plants for people to cultivate-
bringing forth food from the earth.”
Psalm 104:14

 

Advertisements

Changing Landscape

Lakefront Property???

 

There are some days that feel like you are a passenger on a train that seems to be gaining speed. Lately I think I have somehow managed to jump on that train and am just trying to catch my breath!

In a few weeks my middle son will be getting married. I have an entire list of things that need to get done before that day. My husband has a list of things he needs to do. For some reason I am in charge of both lists…I think that just might be the way it works in a marriage.

Trying to get those things done the last week has been difficult due to our very rainy weather. We have had a lot of flooding in our area of the country and have watched our fields covered by water, watched them uncovered only to be covered again with the rain last night and today.

Add in to that; the fact that our land line has been out since Saturday as the phone boxes down the road were covered by water. If I understand it right, anyone in our neighborhood with a land line has the same issue. I will admit it does make it quiet around the house! I am, however, grateful for a cell phone.

The road that takes us to town was covered by the river. No one around here ever remembers that happening before. We also saw three carp swim over the blacktop road….another thing we have never seen before!

We found out the other day that the motor in our well has decided to go on the fritz. I discovered this when our faucet seemed to be running really slow when I wanted a glassful of water.

Since that time we have been camping in our house. My husband has been pumping drinking water from our well with a Dempster hand pump that he and my dad installed this past spring. I am SO grateful they put that thing in!

We have also found our camping solar shower bag to be a very useful item. Living a few days with no running water in the house has been….interesting. I will not go so far as to say exciting……… so will just stick with the word……interesting.

A corner a couple miles from our home

 

I have decided that our problems are fairly minor when I think of the town just down the road that has derailed train cars leaking oil into the river! Yes our little town of Doon has made the national news with that one.

My husband and I have decided it can always be worse. It is amazing to me how single drops of water can band together and become a force of nature. Those single drops are a force that can change the landscape in less than a day.

It is a good lesson for me, that many people…acting with a common purpose can indeed change the world around them. We can be those drops of water that make an impact.

I have also learned that faith is a wonderful thing…keeping busy is a great way to keep your mind off what you cannot control and that it also helps accomplish something..

Bad weather always looks worse through a window.
Tom Lehrer
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/tom_lehrer_120717?src=t_bad_weather

It is only in sorrow bad weather masters us; in joy we face the storm and defy it. Amelia Barr
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/amelia_barr_202842?src=t_bad_weather

Spring Will Arrive…..Sometime

20180413_182901.jpg

You know it is windy when there are whitecaps on the water in the birdbath! Our area of the country has been warned that we are to receive a major winter blizzard this weekend……yes, you read right….this weekend.

They have been warning us for the entire week and so we have been in a bit of a rush to get prepared for this event. Things that needed to be put under cover have all been moved. Things that had been ordered and needed picking up have been picked up.

We have even got our emergency jars filled with water just in case the electricity goes out. This is a distinct possibility as they predict rain changing to snow. During that transition time the electric lines tend to ice up and bounce around in the wind. That leads to downed lines and zip for electricity.

We use a well for our water supply; and without electricity there is no pumping of water to be had. There is also no furnace running should that happen, so my husband has made sure we are adequately supplied with wood for the woodstove.

Storm events have a way of disrupting the normal flow of our lives. They also have a way of making us appreciate when things seem to run smoothly. Perhaps this latest winter storm is a reminder to appreciate those “normal” days.

When we have a snow event this late in the season there is always that glimmer of hope that the snow will not stick around long. In fact it is much more than a glimmer…it is a sure fact. We know that it will not be long and it will have all melted and Spring will actually be here to stay.

Spring has never failed to show up. The seasons are faithful that way. They may throw us a bit of a curve but inevitably the season will be what it is supposed to be….It cannot be anything else and that is a comfort.

I love the way the seasons mirror God. He is faithful. He never fails to show up….even when life is filled with unexpected events….He is still there through it all. And that is the biggest comfort of all!

May this weekend find you comforted by faithfulness. May you be safe, warm and content with where you find yourself in this season of life. And if you are not in a comfortable season; may you have the assurance that life will straighten out and the “normal” season will return.

“Every new season of you life will be an opportunity for you to learn and grow. Don’t celebrate the good without celebrating the bad because they both work together to prepare you for the next season of your life.” 
― Theresa Lewis

“To every thing there is a season,
and a time to every purpose under the heaven.”
— Ecclesiastes

Spring?????

20180404_174458.jpg

I looked out my window this morning and once again stood in amazement. My mind just cannot believe it is really spring; because what I keep seeing is winter just laying around….all over the ground.

This past Monday night we, once again, had a snowstorm…..a blizzard actually. It snowed so much, they did not have classes at the local schools on Tuesday.  Once again, the weatherman predicted an inch. As the storm came closer the only thing “inch” about this storm was that they kept on “inching” up on the snow amount predictions.

Once the storm had blown through and was done, the yard was white, the deck had over a foot of snow on it and my husband had to get out the loader tractor for us to even think about getting out of the garage and off the yard.

By the time I took the photo (above) it was afternoon today and it had started melting….a lot! One of my friends made the comment that this season feels rather like the movie Ground Hog Day…we just keep repeating the same weekend snowstorms over and over. Each weekend is starting to be identical to the once before.  Sadly, they are also predicting another snowstorm this coming weekend. So far they are not giving any snowfall amounts…probably a wise choice on their part!

I have to keep reminding myself that I should be looking for the good in this.  My good friend Mrs. Cobs over at Cobweboriumemporium mentioned the book Pollyanna in one of her recent posts. So like Pollyanna I will intentionally look for silver linings to this snow.

We can use the moisture in our area…the last years have had us in a drought zone so all this heavy wet snow melting into the ground and making mud is actually a wonderful thing. Once we get into our gardens and fields it will be a blessing to have had this snow.

I do feel kind of bad about not having my potatoes planted on Good Friday this year.  My husband and I have always had them in the ground by Easter. Some years they did get snowed on but they always did well. This year I guess it is good it snowed because we did not even have the seed potatoes in the house to plant.

The snow also does cover up the mud for a time….a very short space of time before it makes more mud…..which I guess will be good once those barn swallows return as they will need that mud for repairing and making new nests.

Speaking of birds…I do feel a bit sorry for those summer birds that have returned and now have to deal with the snowfall. The robins, killdeer and meadowlark seem to just be hunkering down and waiting it out.

Perhaps that is the lesson I also need to learn from these repeat storms. I need to be patient, just hunker down and wait it out. Maybe it is a good lesson to slow down, enjoy what the day brings and always find something good in that day. Yes…there is definitely a lesson in contentment to be found on a Spring day that is filled with snow.

 

 

On a positive note….
I haven’t seen any mosquitoes in weeks!
Unknown

 

New Trees and Dead Wood

My husband went to a sale yesterday. I thought it was a farm machinery sale but it turned out to be a consignment auction for pretty much anything and everything. When he drove on the yard and walked through the door the first words he spoke were, “I bought something you will like!”

That really made me curious because I could see the parts of a cultivator on the back of the pickup and I was pretty sure that had never been on my list of “wants. He then dropped the checkbook, ticket stubs and some other stuff on the table and headed back outside.

I couldn’t take it; and curiosity got the best of me so I wandered outside onto the porch. It didn’t take long and, with a huge grin, he hauled out 5 pots of baby Colorado Blue Spruce trees!

To be honest, I was excited! For the last years I have been nagging asking for some more evergreen trees so we could plant another row in our back yard. When I would nag ask for those trees I would typically get the response, “We aren’t that young anymore….we will not see them as big trees.” To which I answered, “Well we AREN”T getting any younger so we should plant some now!”

At this point those baby trees are safely in our garage, waiting for us to make up our minds as to exactly where they should be planted. There is a permanency about planting trees. You have to think ahead to the future and try visualize how big they will get, how much space they are going to take and to stay away from the power lines!

Maybe that permanency is what I like about planting trees. Maybe the fact that you need to have patience, intrigues me? I love thinking ahead to leaving something for the next family that will live here. I also know the reality, that at some point those trees will get old and die, as all things do.

When that happens, I sincerely hope that whoever lives here will let a few of them stand, for the birds and wildlife that need some dead trees. In looking at my little trees, hanging out in the garage tonight, I started thinking about them someday being dead wood.

At first thought, dead wood seems like it would be worthless as it is dead. It always seems like something that is lush, green and growing would have infinitely more value. I started considering that there are beautiful pieces of wooden furniture made from dead wood. I thought about the beautiful carvings made from blocks of dead wood and all those homes made from trees that have become dead wood.

Then my thoughts wandered to today….Good Friday. I thought of that cross that held Jesus as He willingly gave His life so we could have eternal life. The cross, that was at face value an ugly piece of dead wood.

When looking beyond that face value and realizing what happened on that piece of dead wood, I am struck by the fact of the holiness of those pieces of dead wood. They  held the Son of God…..who died for us while we were yet sinners. (Romans 5:8)

If this Good Friday finds you feeling less than worthless….if it finds you thinking that you have no value…if it finds you frustrated and overwhelmed…Do Not Fear! You, like dead wood, have beauty. You have value and you are so worthwhile that the Son of God willingly gave His life for you!

May you be blessed this weekend and may you rejoice in the fact of your great worth. May you look at the promise in the trees that grow around you and know that even when those trees have gone the way of all trees…..there is still a beauty to be found in them……and in you.

God proved His love on the Cross.
When Christ hung, and bled, and died,
it was God saying to the world, ‘I love you.’
Billy Graham
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/billy_graham_150661?src=t_easter

 

“We live to die
We die to live”
Ruth Fondse

Be The Drip

20180228_172608.jpg

We have been enjoying some beautiful weather in the days following our last snow storm. The sun has been shining and the snow has been quickly disappearing. I am pretty happy with that development as I am totally ready for the Spring season.

As I went outside last night to lock the girls in for the night I walked out of the garage door to warmer temperatures. I stood for a bit and just listened to the steady drip….drip….drip of the snow melting off the rooftops and dropping to the ground below.

The steady dripping of each drop of water was slowly melting the icy snow that lay on the ground below the eaves. It is always amazing to me how those single drops of water have that much power. Those single drops can slowly wear down banks of pristine white snow, melt blocks of ice and slowly smooth edges of solid rock.

Standing there watching and listening to those sparkling droplets got me to thinking. Perhaps, we should be drips! Look how much a single drop affects it’s surroundings. It waters plants and brings them back to life…it wears away all those rough edges…it slowly washes away the grime and makes things fresh and new.

Those droplets don’t worry about running out….they just keep dropping until they have given everything and have nothing left. The beauty of it is….the dew comes in the night and they are renewed. The next morning there is a new batch of drops that can get on with the job of being drips.

Those little drops speak the promise of spring weather to come. They speak of life and so much promise. They may be small, but they are not insignificant. In many ways we are like those tiny drops of moisture. We might think we are small but we, are not insignificant and we have so much to offer.

We might, at times, be tempted to believe the lies that our lives don’t matter. We might believe that we are only one person and can’t affect anything. But we can! Like those steady little drops, we can make a difference in ways we cannot begin to imagine.

We were created to make a difference. We were created to be a blessing to those around us and be blessed in return……we were, indeed, created to be drips

I will be at a women’t retreat this weekend so I will be out of touch for a bit. I am hoping to be a drip at that retreat. I am praying to make a difference in someone’s life. I am also praying that someone drips on me! It is always good to have your soul watered and then pour that blessing out on someone else.

If you find yourself feeling dry as dust this week I pray you will be blessed by that small steady drip. May you be filled up to overflowing….to the point where you become the drip.

 

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him,
so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Romans 15:13
New International Version