I’m not a gardener. (My wife is acquainted with gardens, because she did, there’s-always-something-else-to-do, chores on her family’s farm. Her folks milked cows in West Albion township, Minnesota. Her dad also raised and sold seed corn, wheat, and soybeans). I’m a city kid.
Once though—on a hot humid summer morning in July, when I was nineteen, while trying to impress my future father-in-law—I volunteered to stack hay bales onto a wagon dragged behind a baler, attached to a John Deere tractor. “Okay,” he said.
In the not quite three—but what seemed like never-going-to-end—hours of that morning, I learned a life-lesson about the grit required to put food on-the-table farming. After that hay stacking experience, farming (or gardening) wasn’t on my jobs-I want-to-do list.
On a ten-minute water break Ray, my soon-to-be father-in-law, educated me about the soil. He scooped a handful of dirt from the field in his massive right hand, held it waist-high, and let it trickle through his thick fingers, “This is good soil, the blacker the better.” This many years later, if I took a quiz, I’d get this: the “darker-the-soil” question right.
When Jesus related the story of the wheat and weeds, his illustration was a metaphor for life. We’re trying to grow a beautiful, fruitful, nourishing garden and the weeds are doing what they do to ruin our bone-wearying efforts.
How do we profitably grow wheat and prevent the weeds from spoiling our crop? The easy answer is to pay attention to the lessons of the farmer (or gardener). God knows how to raise wheat and deal with weeds.
The successful basics of gardening come from carefully following the instructions of the I-do-this-for-a-living Master Gardener.
Thanks for listening to Lee’s Nite Radio.