Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Expectations & Farming

As I just begin to settle in & adjust to my new season primarily managing my home, I was ready to start making my Pinterest projects happen, enjoying a new routine and the fruits of my labor. I was not ready to paint a house I don't live in, repair a busted water line & the damage it caused, fix costly problems on two newer cars (one less than a month old with the dealer refusing to cover stuff that we hoped would be covered when you buy from a dealer.) My financial leap of faith was going to be without hurdles, right?

I wasn't ready for my daughter to respond with "I don't care!" when I bought her a gift; after all, I have been spending quality time with her and bonding and teaching her for months. Moms who put their career on hold to invest in their family realize vast rewards, right?!

In escaping a life of constant busyness and production, I was going to be able to have more time with friends and these deep meaningful relationships would happen naturally, right?

In raising our children, exercising and eating healthy in order to lose weight, getting dressed up (mostly) every day, and staying up late to make coffee, creating beauty and order in my home, surely my husband would see that I am prioritizing the things that matter to him and respond with great appreciation and gushy love, right?!

The reality is that these were all expectations. They aren't really unrealistic, but they are still my expectations for how I think others should respond to my actions. Admittedly, some days, my expectations are exceeded and I feel really blessed and full of joy. Other days, I experience disappointment. But all the days include valuable lessons in grace and humility. They include the growth and slow and steady transformation experienced when diligence is applied in our lives. These days involve a process of chiseling away at a hard surface created through busyness and worldly aspirations. They involve tearing out weeds and thorns that have prevented true life from thriving.

The reality is that life is messy & expectations do not create a harvest.

I am but a farmer preparing and planting seeds where I am. I cannot control the weather, I understand real fruit grows on its own time. I can continue to be diligent. I can follow wise instruction, I can seek guidance from the One who controls the seasons, I can humbly ask that others join in and help me till and plant and care for my pending harvest. I can experience joy in giving of my fruits generously--even if I'm not sure what the harvest will look like. I can expect that some seeds will die--never producing the fruit I wanted. And in every season, of plenty and in drought, I will thank the Creator for granting me time in the field.

Expectations are natural. Disappointment is common. We can understand it and place our hope in the God that gives and takes away.

Thank you Father for the seasons of plenty and for the knowledge that sometimes moving on to a fresh plot is what is required to grow. The plot may require starting all over again, but the farmer is wise and knows it takes time. It's not automatic. Continual diligence, hope and joy make the farmer. God controls the weather. Every farmer knows that.

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