Children are funny creatures. The Lord gives you one child and you feel like I am pretty good at this parenting thing, and then wham bam He gives you another child that is totally different from the first! As the scenerio goes on and on, you realize that this parenting thing is harder than it looked at first. (I personally believe that God does this to grow us in Him and to keep us humble. But that is just my opinion). We moved to Tennessee about the time our oldest son turned 10. He loves all the beauty that living in the country brings, but he can do without all the work. He will work on the farm if asked, but he doesn't have a happy heart about it all. He is now 16 preparing himself for college. He learned at the ripe old age of 10 that garden work just wasn't for him. It was more work than he cared to encounter so he decided that he would be doing something with his brain instead of his hands. (Just for the record, I think God has something for him that will require college so I am not disappointed in his decision). He is not lazy, but farm work isn't appealing to him. Our second son is a bit different. He doesn't mind the farm work. He does it for the most part willingly, but he would be just as happy doing something else. Usually after helping his Dad on the farm for a day, this 14 year old will come in feeling content and satisfied. However, he has to be strongly encouraged to work on the farm. This is the son that can fix just about anything, and he is good at it. He will often times see things that need fixing and just do it without being asked.
Then comes our 3rd son. The farm is where his heart lies. He is just as enthusiastic about it as his dad. He is always willing to help. He is always asking for more animals to take care of. Just yesterday he told me that we would be planting seeds in our garden soon and he was excited. He appreciates what we grow and enjoys eating it to the fullest. He is always outside every chance he gets, and when the animals see him they all come running.
He enjoys watching the animals and seeing if they need anything else. I can't wait until the lambs are born because I have a feeling Jacob will be right in the mix of it. He is just 11 and he is the one who stops and expresses his amazement at all the things that we have done here in 4 years. I love the time spent with this child outside. His wheels are always turning on different things we can do to improve the farm. I pray that this isn't something this child outgrows. I often wonder if our oldest son had lived on this farm since he was 7 would his heart be different? Would the land and the animals be as near and dear to him as they are to his brother? I am not for sure, but I pray that Jacob's heart stays turned toward the farm lifestyle. I am also wise enough to know (remember I too will be 40 in a few short months) that all of our children have an appreciation for the farm life. They may not all embrace it for themselves, but they will all benefit from the lifestyle that we have led. I also think that when they are all older growing tomatoes will become more enjoyable, but if not I KNOW they will all want to come and watch our tomatoes grow!!
grace and peace,