I was home for lunch the other day and happened to capture a couple shots of our bulls shoving each other around out in the field. I have a feeling that Red Bull probably started it. Our gray bull, Chester, isn’t very excitable and only bothers to exert his authority when there’s breeding opportunities to consider.
And I watched Red Bull go round and round and Chester just stand right in the same spot, holding his ground, and I thought how very much like that we are. So young, so fresh, so determined that our way will work if we just. keep. trying.
And then there’s God. The true center of the universe. Unmoving and unmoveable. Unchanging and unchangeable. Carrying out His good works and His purpose with steady, deliberate, diligence. And nothing we do or say, no matter what force we put behind it or what muscles we bring to it, is going to move Him once inch.
There’s this part in the John Wayne movie The Cowboys (which you know we’ve seen 17 bazillion times!) where Wil Anderson is sitting on a hill with his soon to be cowhands watching two bulls. He says “I’ve seen’um battle all day long. Sometimes the old one wins and sometimes the young one. The young one’s got strength and quickness. The old one’s got experience.”
How often do we push back against God’s Word, trying to ignore it, or twist it to mean what we want it to say?
But the Truth doesn’t change.
How often do we fight against our Holy Spirit, quelling that still, small voice that tells us we know better and we’d better not?
But our disobedience is still sin.
In the movie they watch the two heavy-weights grunt and shove and bellow and war against each other for a few minutes. Then with a snort, one walks away.
And the Duke says, “That’s the old one still standing there.”
And rides away.
God is eternal.
His work and purpose is the work and purpose of eternity.
The world is temporal and temporary. If we throw ourselves into the work of world, the petty battles for position and prestige, the endless loop of self-gratification, then we are merely throwing ourselves endless against a brick wall. And one day that wall will turned to dust and on the other side we will be face to face with God Himself.
We often get asked why we farm. We don’t make lots of money. It’s a lot of work, stress, and grief. We don’t have to do it to feed ourselves. So why? There’s lots of staple reasons we fall back on. Helping the environment. Good way to raise our kids. Quality of food. It always seemed like such a complicated answer. But I think I’ve finally found the real bottom line.
Because it brings us closer to God.
Are there other ways to be close to Him? Sure. Do you have to have a farm to understand Him? Of course not. This is just our journey. Farming brings God’s Word, to life for us every day. We see new mercies and miracles each day. We travel the road of grief and redemption from pain over and over. We absorb His timing and and observe His grace daily, weekly, from season to season.
We learn to accept our own weakness.
Just a little Friday Farming Philosophy from a long-time brick wall battler.