According to the Merriam-Webster online dictionary,
REDEFINE transitive verb, \ˌrē-di-ˈfīn\
1: to define (as a concept) again: reformulate <had to redefine their terms>
2 a: to reexamine or reevaluate especially with a view to change b: transform
My boss once told me that I am the most analytical person he knows. I wasn’t sure how he meant the comment to be taken, but I decided I would take it as a compliment. And he surely is right. I am analytical by nature…perhaps to the point of paralysis when it comes to making certain decisions. Like starting a blog, for instance. I analyzed the idea from every angle – What would be the focus of my blog? Would I be able to keep it up? Would people read it? Would I read it?? How would I make my blog interesting and engaging? On and on the thoughts went. Poor Ryan – he didn’t know what he was in for.
Speaking of Ryan, when we were dating and I began to contemplate (analytical, remember??) the prospect of joining him in our own Green Acres of sorts, I started to observe what I would categorize to be two groups of farm wives – those who were jaded by years of long hours and financial uncertainty and those who were not. I made up my mind then and there, that by the grace of God, if Ryan and I were going to be married, I was not going to be a jaded wife. As I began to think about practical steps to avoid becoming embittered, I began to think about how I would change the traditional depiction of farm living. How I would like to redefine it.
Fast forward to Monday, June 25th, 2012. I was on my way home from work and on the phone with my good friend, Rose. Rose and I were catching up on life. Her husband, Scott, is currently overseas with the military and meanwhile, she is busy stateside. Rose also has a blog where she chronicles life and Scott’s military updates. So when I was telling Rose about life after marriage – settling into a rural farmhouse, getting 11 chickens, starting our first garden, shooting 3 rabbits with a 20 gauge shotgun, and the miscellaneous other stories – Rose says, “Lin, you need to start a blog.” And of course my desire to start a blog was immediately rekindled.
I hesitated though, “But Rose, no one will read it.”
“I will” she says. “And so will your sisters.” She did have a point.
So that got me thinking. That evening as I was sitting on my lawn mower…errr…lawn tractor mowing the lawn, I prayed and decided – I’m just going to try it! And I started to get excited.
Some of you may be wondering, “How exactly do you intend to redefine farm living?” Well, as the above definition suggests, I hope to reexamine with a view to change…and maybe even in some way rediscover the heart of the farming lifestyle with regard to -
o A joyful rather than jaded spirit. So much of what I associated in the past with farming was drab – Long hours of arduous work. Tight budgets. Bad years. Even worse years. Mud. Straw. Manure. Need I say more? But I truly believe that the farming lifestyle (and as I have discovered, it is indeed a “lifestyle”) has so much richness to offer. Difficulty, yes. But also so much to celebrate. Ultimately, it is my hope that the difficulties and pressures of life will serve to sweeten my spirit rather than embitter it. And for those of you who have thought of farming as I once did, as dreary and somewhat unappealing, perhaps the glimpses you see here may be enough to convince you of its beauty.
o Growth – capturing growth and the process of maturation in all of its forms.
o To discover and when needed, to introduce, loveliness, femininity, creativity, and a sense of culture to farmstead living.
o Ryan and me – What does it look like for Ryan and me to make a life of our own on the farm?
o Jesus – Most importantly, what does a farming family, or an entire farming operation, look like when it is completely centered on loving and adoring Jesus and loving others? Our church recently finished a series about the book of Philippians, "Re:Defining Everything", in which we were challenged to redefine our lives around Christ. We trust God to work in us for the sake of His good purposes and glory.
And as I seek to redefine the farm life, I realize that in many ways, I will just be defining the essence of it. Hence, Re:Defining the farm life.
Until next time,
S.D.G. - "Soli Deo Gloria" - "Glory to God alone"
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