Lessons on the Farm

Boy I’m ready for Spring–how ’bout you?!

The end of winter always seems to be the longest, hardest part of the year for me. So many challenges packed into the last few months of cold weather! We’ve got lambs and chicks and maybe even calves (oh my!) which is so fun. But then we’ve got twice a day feeding, and hay bales to move, and frozen water buckets, and everyone being sick, sick, sick and part of me just can’t get over losing my dog a couple years ago. (And this year Penny really reminds me of her more and more.)

The emotional ups and downs are so exhausting.

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Then I read a Facebook post from a loved one who’s struggling with their grief. And I tried to think of what I could possibly say that would be any help, any comfort, and I realized that if my words and thoughts don’t comfort myself then why should I expect them to comfort anyone else?

So I wrote nothing.

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But as I’ve gone through the last few days, nursing our little ones and doing chores and trying to do some work from home without feeling like I’m splitting myself in half and failing anyway…the turmoil slipped away and peace seeped in.

As the lambs frisked and bounced and tumbled and chased…and we talked about how we sell lambs every fall and have new lambs every spring…my heart felt renewed.

“Behold, the Lord God will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him. He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.” (Isaiah 40:10-11)

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As we watched fuzzy, scrubby chicks flit and flutter and fluster around in their freshly-bedded brooder house…and we talked about how everyone looks different on the outside but looks have nothing to do with value…my heart felt comforted.

“But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7)

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As the water buckets filled with fresh, clean, cold water “magically” spouting out of our hoses…and we talked about the steady cycle of rain–infiltration–evaporation meeting our needs…my heart felt peaceful.

 “When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained;What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?” (Psalms 8:3-4)

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As we watched the sunset and the sunrise…and the sunset and the sunrise…and the sunset and the sunrise…my heart felt quiet joy.

“It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him. (Lamentations 3:22-24)

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Sometimes there are not words.

Sometimes there is only life.

And living here as taught me that sometimes that is enough.

“Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing: thou hast put off my sackcloth, and girded me with gladness;  To the end that my glory may sing praise to thee, and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks unto thee for ever.” (Psalms 30:11-12)

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