Fat white bunnies and the changing of seasons

The last time I was home for harvest...far too long ago!

The last time I was home for harvest…far too long ago!

If I close my eyes, I can almost smell it – musty, earthy, with a bit of sweat and dust. I can almost hear the hum of the combine, and hear the wheat being cut and harvested into the hopper. Other than spring, when life was reborn everywhere, harvest was one of my favourite seasons on the farm. It was like you finally got to reap from the months of sowing, spraying, checking on things, and praying for just the right amount of rain.

My Dad has farmed just over 50 crops, dutifully and painstakingly at times, watching and praying as the seasons changed. But what’s the one thing you could always count on? There would be a harvest. Summer heat would eventually cool to the right temperature, allowing you to bring in the crop you’d waited months for.

God has a special affection for farmers, I think. What other job is there that so many elements are out of your control, determining your outcome?

I was reading in Isaiah this morning, using this study guide. It’s thick, long and daunting, but helps me ask questions of the text when I read it, rather than just reading. After prophecies of judgement on the people for how they had disobeyed God and followed their own way, God speaks in Isaiah 28: 23-29 about how the farmer tends to his crops. For dill and cumin and wheat – how there are specifics the farmer knows and is led by God on how to harvest, “For he is rightly instructed, his God teaches him.”

God basically says that you don’t harvest forever. You don’t “thresh it forever” (vs28). But in verse 29 we read the best part, “This also comes from the Lord of hosts, he is wonderful in counsel and excellent in wisdom.”

As I stare out our livingroom window, fat white bunnies hide in the bushes in our backyard, foraging for bits of food. Daylight is starting to take form, and my heart longs for spring. How many more weeks? I am not a fan of winter. But winter forces rest, both on man and the land. And if we had a winter season of only two months, our Alberta land would not have the rest and hibernation it needs to produce the following year.

The seasons are the length they are for a reason, for what is needed to produce in the next.

And I am reminded… God is wonderful in counsel, excellent in wisdom. All seasons change, eventually. Always. And the tilling, and threshing, the sowing and the reaping – are all in his hands. My job? Is to be instructed of the Lord, and rest.

Whatever your season is today, trust that God has you in His hands, and will rightly instruct you.

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Monday Minute: Weeds and Wheat  

 

wheat_field__1_1680x1050I grew up on a farm where we had seasons of sowing, spraying, and harvest. Every year, like clockwork, these seasons came. From about April to October my Dad was (and still is) very busy with prepping, working in the field, and then taking off the crop that he’s worked and prepared for all year.

Usually around July is when Dad will go spraying. The seed has started to grow, but along with it are weeds. In order to prevent the weeds from choking out the seed growth for which every farmer strives for, Dad will use a spray that kills the weeds, but not the seed. Thus, at harvest time, he’s left with wheat, canola, or whatever he planted.

In Matthew 13 Jesus is talking to the people in parables about sowing, reaping, and weeds. In Matthew 13:24-30 Jesus tells the story of a farmer who planted good seed, but then an enemy came and planted weeds. His workers questioned this, and asked if the farmer wanted them to go pull up the weeds. But he said no. “No, lest in gathering the weeds you root up the wheat along with them. Let both grow together until the harvest…” At harvest time, he would tell his reapers to bind up the weeds and burn them, and then harvest his crop.

His ultimate concern was not the comfort of the wheat, but of the harvest; the end result.

To be honest, I don’t even fully know WHY it stood out to me, but that I can relate to the feeling of something dying and something growing at the same time in my life. Old habits or thinking processes dying a slooooooow death while at the same time new habits, thinking, and believing are growing. Would it be easier if the Lord just wiped out the weeds so that the seeds could shine through? Sure.

Why do certain stresses in relationships, circumstances, emotions, and so forth, linger when we clearly have sown good seeds? Perhaps there’s a greater harvest that’s being cultivated. Coming. A greater harvest in letting the weeds fester, because it causes greater growth in the end than if it were all uprooted at once. God is the Lord of the harvest (Matthew 9:38), and He knows when to uproot and burn those weeds, and when to let the harvest grow.

In a couple weeks, my Dad will begin the journey of harvest. And I am going to try to let it be a reminder that God knows when to harvest in my life, when to completely uproot those nasty weeds, and how to cause growth. Ultimately, through it all, I hope that I learn more of Him.

Happy Monday ya’ll!

Prairie Skies

Last weekend, the last long one of the summer, I drove 3000 miles to be home with my parents for a couple days. I had my Starbucks to drink,  Joe Champion and Joyce Meyer preaching to power up, and “Rush Hour Spanish” to challenge me. Let’s just say I quickly realized I will need to listen to CD #1 of Spanish several times!

The smell of hay and harvest mixed with the sounds of crickets somehow brings such a calm. Enjoy my little journey out of the city!

This first frame was a random stop on the #1 Highway. I have driven this road for nearly 13 years and never stopped here before. But this time, the water beckoned me and I needed a stretch break. I grabbed my camera and meandered this bird lookout…

Frame #2 and #3 My Mom and I enjoyed some time experiencing the new train that tours local small towns. As well as a drive up the dirt road to a small lake (that is lower this year due to less rain)…

Frame #4 … I spent a few hours hanging out with Dad in the combine. I haven’t done that since I was a little girl!