Sunday, November 3, 2013

Watching the Wind

Brianna and I made a pact to write daily for the month of November. It's National Novel Writing Month or something of that nature and the challenge is to write 50,000 words in 30 days. Well, we aren't novel writers and never will be. Surely I have enough drama in my life I don't need to make it up! The 50 thousand words we cut to 25 thousand and the way it's going already it will be a lot less because wordiness does not necessarily make for good reading.... but the point for us is to write. That doesn't mean we'll publish everything, either.

I'm really, really tired of writing about the ups and downs with the Missy. She is who she is and  I don't see that changing a lot baring a miracle in the next year or five.... Always we must keep courage. Always we must be consistent to the extent that we must always be changing it up. I plan to keep posting updates because it helps me sort things out, but maybe less often as long as you all will keep praying for us!

I would like to try my hand at writing out the object lessons the Lord places before me in my day to day life. I know that they are placed there for my edification but I don't always give them as much thought as they are worth. Their significance would have a greater effect if I would take them time to acknowledge and understand them. This kind of writing is a bit of a stretch - a huge stretch actually,  for me and it may take more time than I would like. With that, here's to 30 days noticing God's messages to me in the day-to-day things of my life.


Watching the Wind

The words faded in and out of my attention as I scrubbed another dish. Audio verse is a wonderful invention, but often I lose the train of thought as I focus on the task at hand.  Suddenly the words had me.... clouds, rain, planting, wind, seeds...  Trays of dirt and tiny plants, bags of soil, cuttings waiting to be planted littered my floor. These words were something I could relate to in the here and now.

"Whoever watches the wind will not plant; whoever looks at the clouds will not reap. . . Sow your seed in the morning, and at evening let not your hands be idle."  Ecclesiastes 11:4

I remembered when I first started growing tomatoes for marketing. Growing tomatoes had been pretty easy in our family garden and we always had an over abundance and so it was natural to select tomatoes as our experiment cash crop. I considered a successful market gardener down the road and my mom and I set out to visit him and garner from his wisdom. He was all too happy to share. We learned of his gardening techniques and the optimal dates for planting the seeds and setting the plants in the ground. He talked of varieties and tomato size. He spoke of the market and how restaurants appreciated his beautiful and large tomatoes. He was fairly successful though it was clear it was more of hobby then a business for him.

One thing puzzled me, though, he had a strong aversion to planting tomatoes in the rain. He emphasized that tomato leaves must not get wet or they would succumb to disease. He told how in the last growing season he lost all but a dozen plants out of 75 or so. It had been a wet and cold spring and he could never get his tomatoes planted in the field. . . I had never considered the rain or my tomato plants getting wet and had planted totally expecting my plants to appreciate the rain and soak it up. I hadn't lost a single plant so what was this all about?

It was another COLD and RAINY spring. We followed the dates my neighbor shared regardless of the dampness and it took awhile, but we had lovely tomatoes in abundance and I had people asking how we had ripe tomatoes before most gardeners when the weather was not cooperating. I didn't know. The blessing of the Lord and the way the sun hits our little hollow and heats the place up?

I drove slowly past the neighbor's garden hoping to see his plants thriving, but there weren't any. Off the side of his house was a window built out like a greenhouse. There were dozens of plants in there, tall and spindly, turning brown. The forecast kept predicting rain and he could never plant them. The next year I saw his plants again wither away in the window box. And then the next year it appeared that he didn't plant the seeds at all. When I brought him tomatoes from my garden there was mutterings about how uncooperative the weather had been...

Perhaps old age was having its way with the farmer and he became fixated on watching the wind and the clouds and the conditions were never right. I don't know why else a successful gardener would suddenly not have a crop when the novice just down the road was breaking her back picking fruit.

I actually thought of several lessons from this experience, but the one that comes closest to home...  it has to do with Missy, of course (even when I don't want to go there I go there!). It's easy to have hope and courage  and to want work hard to help the twin who shows promise and a workable spirit. It's so not easy to keep courageously working on in the face of daily - no,  hourly failure to reach her heart. If I'm "watching the wind and the clouds" there's not a whole of lot of indication that planting and heartfelt pruning and tender caring for the garden patch of her heart will produce a harvest ... No indication whatsoever.. but that's not actually ours to determine. So, I'm here to remind myself to keep planting seed and cultivating and praying for a harvest regardless of the rain. (I'm trying desperately not to give up in despair over this child -Just being honest.)

  "He that observeth the wind shall not sow, and he that regardeth the clouds shall not reap. To every man He has given his work, and we are not to conjecture as to whether or not our earnest endeavors will prove successful. All that we as individuals are responsible for is the unwearied, conscientious discharge of duty that someone must do; if we fail to do that which is placed in our way, we cannot be excused of God. But having done the best we can, then we are to leave the results with God. But it is required of us that we exercise more mental and spiritual power. It is your duty and has been your duty every day of the life God has graciously granted you, to pull at the oars of duty, for you are a responsible agent of God." Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, pg 183, April 30, 1894


~Melissa said...

Beautiful! I love your idea of writing down object lessons we see in daily life... I may start that, too. I'm trying to look on the up side of things, personally, so really trying to blog more positively... more for the good of me, to focus on the good in my life... a person never has to look too far to find the bad and the ugly... so why not leave it alone and give our focus to Christ, to Blessings, to happiness. :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing. Much food for thought especially for me who tend to look for signs as a constant evaluation of how I'm doing. In itself it is not bad but when the apparant signs tend to become discouraging or inflating of ones mind it can be problematic. Jesus refused to be elevated by praise or discouraged by censure - a big lesson for me indeed. I will continue to ponder this... Thanks! Antionette