Fall is the season of harvest. Having come from an agricultural community, I vividly remember the talk of the town in October and November was around getting crops off the fields. Farmers invest incredible amounts of money and time to ensure the crops they plant can be healthy and have a high yield. I did not grow up knowing much about farming, so when I learned about how delicate growing crops is, I was both amazed and impressed.
Throughout the Bible we read about farming. Right away in Genesis, we read God employs Adam to “work it (the garden of Eden) and take care of it.” God gives us his creation to care for and to use.
We can start with the environment. If we were to grow crops, we would want to plant seeds in soil that is good for that particular seed. We would water the seed or pray for rain because seeds need water. We would plant the seed at the right time. When the seed sprouts into a plant, we would maybe fertilize it and remove any weeds that could hurt the plant. The time and attention given to the plant or plants are ongoing.
The analogy of farming is so appropriate in how we nurture and educate our children. We want to find the best environment we can. We want to make sure they are being surrounded by people who love them and keep them safe. We want to remove the hardships and challenges that prevent them from becoming fully who they could be.
One thing I have learned about farmers is that they pray. A lot. They can’t make the sun shine or the rain pour. Disease, drought, and weeds show up and there is little they can do. It happens, and yet, the crops grow. Similar to farmers, we can’t keep our kids away from all harm. They are going to experience the brokenness of this world. We work tirelessly to ensure the best possible life experience for our kids so they can grow to be righteous people, but it won’t come easy, and it won’t all be in our control. Like farmers, we need to pray for our kids. Pray for their friends, pray for their teachers, pray for their future spouse. Invite God’s presence into their lives so he is there when things are not in your control.
Farming is tough work. Parenting is tough work! I encourage you to work tirelessly, tending to what will help your kids be righteous people. And most importantly, invite God in to be present.