Yesterday I got to practice picking things up and leveling ground with our sub-compact Kubota tractor. It was fun. There were two trash bags full of grass in the middle of the back yard that I thought needed to be moved. So I drove up to them lowered the bucket and tried to lift. My first attempt the bucket was not all the way on the ground so the trash bag just rolled. Then Bob came over and directed me and I scraped up the bag took it over by the compost pile and dumped it. Then I went back for the second bag. This one was a little more difficult and Bob ended up rolling it into the bucket for me but I was able to dump it out by the other one.
Then I noticed that I had disturbed the ground and made a bit of a rut. So I decided that I needed to level that ground back out. I asked Bob how to do it and he said that I should just play around with it and figure out what would work. So I did. Playing around with it gave me practice on the controls. By the time I was finished the ground was level and looking good. I wished there was more to do in the yard but there wasn’t so I parked it (another fun job) and quit for the day.
Just like I am new to running our small tractor and need some assistance until my skills have been honed, Christians can get guidance to help them get started but there comes a time when they must learn to “be” a Christian on their own. Christianity is a spiritual discipline and must be exercised or it will not flow freely in your life. You will forget what to do and how to do it.
As with any training program getting the right nutrition is important. The Word of God is food for those who embrace Christianity with their lives. But just eating is not enough, you must then exercise what has been learned in order to grow and mature.
James 1:22 (NASB)
22 But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.
I am working to become a very good tractor operator but that won’t happen without practice and discipline. Being a good and faithful Christian also does not happen without practice and discipline. Join me in this challenge to become more disciplined in a Christian life.
Enjoy your week.
Genesis 2 gives a view of a simple life with purpose. This is the beginning of time before the world got complicated and complex.
Genesis 2:5-6, 15 (NASB)
5 Now no shrub of the field was yet in the earth, and no plant of the field had yet sprouted, for the Lord God had not sent rain upon the earth, and there was no man to cultivate the ground. 6 But a mist used to rise from the earth and water the whole surface of the ground………15 Then the Lord God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it.
Cultivate means to work or serve. Adam was to work or serve the earth. The earth was not to serve Adam. The earth sustains life and we should care for it so that life can continue. Adam as the first man was given a charge to cultivate and keep the land. This is a big responsibility and God never took back that responsibility from the human descendants of Adam and Eve.
To live a simpler life we must first each take back our responsibility of caring for the land with what we do. You may live in the middle of a city and don’t think that what you do affects the land, but you are wrong. Everything that each of us who live on this planet does has an effect on the earth that we live on and are to care for.
My husband and I are beginning to transform our back yard as the first step on our journey to a sustainable lifestyle. Part of our motivation is getting back to our roots and part of the motivation is to try to care for a piece of this planet that God has given us. We desire to find a way that the hustle and bustle of metropolitan living no longer takes all of our time and robs us of God’s purpose for this life.
Image with me being able to walk into your back yard and see the beauty that God put on this planet, as is documented in the book of Genesis. God caused all those plants to sprout. Each time I see a “volunteer” plant show up in my yard I praise God for allowing it to grow and allowing me to partake of its fruit. Our backyard has squash plants growing in our compost pile and in random places throughout the yard. Some Bob has transplanted into hills and some are still growing where they started.
Bob has planted tomato plants, pole beans, okra, lima beans and peppers. I am so thankful that God is helping us to figure out how to transform the dirt in our back yard into soil that produces fruit. Believe me when I tell you this will be a long road to turn dirt-which is just ground depleted of nutrients into soil–which sustains life because it has the micro-organisms and nutrients needed to sustain life.
Bob planted a peach tree in the back yard last year and this year it has peaches. We won’t eat many this year but next year we should be able to eat lots of the fruit of the tree. Won’t you join us in thanking God for all the wonderful plants that you see blooming and producing life sustaining fruit?
Enjoy your week and I will be back next week with more.
When all the eggs are gone and the bunny is nowhere to be found is Easter over? Is that what it is all about? Unfortunately some people believe that Easter is only about fun, candy and food. That saddens my heart.
I believe that all of the events that lead up to Resurrection Sunday, commonly known as Easter define a Christian’s life. The hope that is in the death and resurrection of Jesus is what motivates my faith. To me knowing that the Creator of the Universe made a way for all of us to be saved from our sins is a tremendous gift. The fact that we are able to communicate with Him because He sent His Son to show us life more abundantly and to suffer and die on the cross for our sins, amazes me. I feel awe and wonder when I think that Jesus did not let the grave hold Him and he brought the hope of eternal life when He rose from the dead.
And yet I am sad because there are children and adults in the world that have been lulled to sleep with presents from Santa Claus at Christmas and stuff from the Easter bunny at Easter and have never really learned the truth about these celebrations. I am not against having games and fun to celebrate as long as those games are not the only thing you do to celebrate. I believe that Christian parents, whether they frequent church or not are responsible to help their children understand the true meaning of these days of celebration.
It has become apparent in our society we have forgotten why we celebrate, we just look forward to time off work or school because of a holiday. I would bet that a lot of children and possibly adults could not tell you what the 4th of July is all about. That is a celebration that every citizen of this country should understand. So if we don’t understand celebrations around recent history, how will we ever understand celebrations about what would be considered ancient history.
John 3:16 (NKJV)
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
The bible may be very old but it is still the living Word of God. It still speaks life. Join me this week in spending time in God’s Word and then sharing the hope we find in the Word of God with those around us. Lets do our best to awaken the world around us to the real truth around our faith holidays.
Have you ever dreamed of a simpler life, one that did not require long drives through tremendous traffic in order to make a living? Bob and I have been dreaming this dream for a long time now and are beginning to take steps to make it happen. We pruchased a small tractor as a beginning step toward that goal.
We hope to use it as an income stream for retirement and are working on getting a small business started by tilling gardens and other stuff that this machine can do. The beauty of this machine is that it is versitle with the bucket, tiller and box blade and it is small enough that it can get through a 48 inch opening. This makes it ideal to help homeowners with small gardens and other little jobs in yards.
Bob has always loved working with tractors and other equipment and when you do what you love, if you can make income with it, you are usually happier. I think it is fun to drive too.
I believe that God guides us into ventures that will sustain us and keep us happy. The day we first saw this tractor we were looking for a machine to rent to fix a mess that we had in the back yard. I took one look at it and felt something drawing me to it. The more Bob and I talked about it the more we felt we wanted to purchase it.
Once we have an established business we plan on moving to a more country atmosphere where we can grow our own food and live off the land. It is all about simplifying our lives and enjoying this earth that God has given us to steward.
Genesis 2:15 (NKJV)
Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.
I pray that each and everyone of you have dreams and that you are working to make those dreams come true. Enjoy your week and I will be back next week with more.