The Good Fight of a Bad Farmer

15304“The hardworking farmer should be the first to receive a share of the crops.” 2 Timothy 2:6

That oddly misshapen dome-like thing near my driveway is a chicken tractor. You can’t really tell under all those zip ties and bulging chickenwire, but soon our flock will settle in there. Soon, they’ll be digging up worms, snapping at grass, and cackling with glee (at least, that’s how I see it after the cramped box they’ve been in).

But the whole thing is—to be honest—painfully bad.

My hands have grown accustomed to wireless keyboards, not wire cutters. I’m used to tapping out missives on smartphones, not mashing down seeds under anemic soil. My arms and neck still burn a bright red if I even miss one application of sunscreen.

This land out here is my grandfather’s realm, not mine. Not yet. He scooped up dirt and tested it in his hands; he tasted the rain in the air; he knew the rhythms of God’s creation

Me? I’m just trying to keep my grape vines from dying—or dying more. So much has been lost in the transmission from his generation to mine that I’m having to relearn it all. Having to pray for wisdom constantly. Having to trust God for each new project.

You’re likely to find me with a shovel in one hand and a smartphone in the other. Each step takes a dozen YouTube videos and three or four articles. Really, it feels more like falling forward.

But for my wife, for my girls, I gladly do so. Petroleum products and artificial additives caused so many issues for them. No one won us to their side in a fight against these things; no one warned us we should avoid them. We saw the impact before we even knew anyone else had declared war on them. Red dye, cherry flavor, sodium benzoate, aspartame, high fructose corn syrup, these were not our friends.

So, my wannabe farmer hands took over, shaky though they may be.

This isn’t a fight against anyone or a cause to join in. It’s the good fight for them and to be the man God created me to be.

“Be patient, then, brothers, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop and how patient he is for the autumn and spring rains.” James 5:7

Written by John UpChurch

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