Life on the Farm Day 1: Our Farm
Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness. Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:3-4, ESV)
Growing up in New Jersey, the closest I ever came to farm life was picking blueberries or pulling weeds in our front yard. I believed all farmers wore overalls and drove small green tractors around their little patch of farmland. In fact, I was so clueless about farming that when I first met my husband, Ben (who happens to be a farmer), I asked him if he planted corn in the fall. I had absolutely no idea and no interest in what farm life was like. Fast forward 20 years and I’ve learned that farmers don’t actually wear overalls, that they operate several huge pieces of farm equipment, that their fields span over thousands of acres, and that farm life teaches many spiritual life lessons. I have also learned that farmers plant in the spring, not the fall.
My husband is a crop farmer in Iowa, growing thousands of acres of corn and soybeans. We also grow sweet corn on the cob to eat in the summer, but the corn he mostly plants is used for animal feed, for making ethanol, and for putting into foods like cereal and bread. My role on the farm is pretty simple: I deliver food to the workers during the busy months of planting and harvesting. They work long hours during those times, and a hot meal at dinner time is always greatly appreciated. It also gives the kids a chance to see their dad, as he’s gone before they wake up and home after they’ve gone to bed. It’s a busy time for everyone.
Farming is mentioned over and over in the Bible. It was an occupation for many, and Jesus used it as an example in explaining spiritual concepts. The basic principles of farming are extremely relevant to our spiritual lives, and out here in Iowa we are fortunate enough to see and experience them firsthand. The cycle of preparing soil for planting, patiently waiting during the growing season, reaping the benefits during harvest time, and making room for a period of rest can apply to any area of your life. Whether it is family life, work life, or church life, each requires a season of preparation, a season of growing, a season of reaping, and a season of rest.