“God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” Genesis 1:27 “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” Matthew 10: 29-31
“And when they heard this, they lifted their voices to God with one accord and said, “O Lord, it is You who made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and all that is in them,” Acts 4:24
It seems like there are many friends and acquaintances that are going through trials and tough times now. Sometimes we may wonder why all these hard things take place in life. We find in the above passages of scripture that the one true God, the God who created you and me in His own image, the God who created the heavens, the earth, the sea and all that is within them, also cares for each of us. Not even a hair of our head is lost without His knowledge of it.
While doing my daily task of watering some plants the Lord began reminding me of some scriptures and gave me parallels from our lives with the plants I was tending. I will only focus on one point now. Trials. This passage in James is difficult to put in practice while going through the trials and temptations but it also reveals why they are worth enduring.
” Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. … Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.” James 1:2-4&12
For those who have been saved from their sins there is an eternal reward that is awaiting each one as they endure these earthly trials. There is comfort in other passages such as Philippians 4:6&7 and 1 Corinthians 10:13.
God cares for you so much more than me caring for those plants, however, I start the seedlings indoors that I plan to transplant. In the beginning I allow the seeds to germinate and get a start to new life under the most favorable conditions I can create for them…warmth, light from florescent lights, water and some air circulation. This is like us being born again in Christ.
Soon I take these young plants and begin exposing them to less than favorable conditions and begin “hardening them off”. This is a process so they can become strong and endure Kansas’ extreme growing conditions. Slowly I expose my young plants to more and more direct sunlight, stronger winds and more intense heat and cold extremes. In the same way the Lord allows us to go through trials, knowing just what we need to begin our “hardening off” process to life’s difficulties so that we can produce and yield the fruit we are to bear. Remember to trust in the Lord for your strength, pray with a thankful heart for all He has done for you and let your requests and needs be made known to Him. We can find comfort in the words from 1 Peter 5:7 “…casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.”
God’s love for us as humans, created in His own image, was so great that He sent His one and only Son to die for our sins that we might truly be free and have life. “‘For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.'” John 3:16-18
If the Lord has given us this gift that we might live don’t you think He cares enough to carry you through the trials you are facing in life right now? “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?” Romans 8:32
My! It has been a long time since I wrote a farm update! Lord willing, I will begin writing updates on a more regular basis again. Spring has begun and the Lord is working the wonders of His creation once again bringing the seemingly dead brown and grey plants back to life with vibrant greens and brilliantly colored flowers! What a beautiful time of year this is! Far too many things have transpired since the last farm update so I will only hit a few of the biggest highlights.
Asparagus! The first emerging spears have begun peaking through! The soil and weather are still plenty cool for the asparagus to really begin producing but I anticipate within the next couple of weeks we will have it available for purchase!
Radishes are coming right along too and I anticipate having a few available about the same or maybe even a little earlier than the asparagus. Our big hoop house is full of all kinds of greens and growing beautifully now! Several varieties of lettuce, Swiss chard, kale, beets, white spring turnips, green onions and spinach to name a few are mini rockets shooting upwards! What a blessing to be in the soil growing things once again!
Orchard pruning was a last minute hurried operation between some of the last wood cutting orders I’ve been trying to fill. Now there are a few of the plum trees that are in about full bloom!
Tomato, pepper, cabbage, broccoli and some flower (for Mom and G-Jean’s beautiful flower beds!) transplants are up and growing to a good start. It won’t be much longer before we will be transplanting the cole crops out to the garden.
Praise the Lord after G-Jean had cut all the seed potatoes we were able to plant them in one afternoon. Our main season planting of beets, radishes and white spring turnips are also planted. An experimental late planting of a heat resistant romaine lettuce called Jericho (developed in Israel), a butter head and leaf type lettuce is seeded too.
It seems like just the other day we finished mulching the strawberries (I was very late getting that job done) but it was past time to uncover the plants when I finally got the last of the mulch off. They are now beginning to show signs of new growth springing forth and Lord willing are prepared to send out their flower buds soon.
I anticipate our main season harvest, will start in the big hoop house around the middle to end of this month! Lord willing we will have the garden share option available again this season (full and half shares) or you may place an order requesting the specific crops you would like to purchase. Pack days will be Tuesdays and Fridays and we will need your order the day before.
If you are interested in being a part of a group pick-up with others from your area this season let me know. Please verify the area you are located in and I will try to put you in contact with others who would like to be a part of a group pick up in your area. In past years we’ve had groups come from the following areas: Independence (Kansas), Coffeyville, Parsons, Oswego/Altamont, Bartlesville/Dewey (Oklahoma) and there have been individuals who have contacted us from the Pittsburg KS and Grove/Miami, OK areas.
Enjoy the beautiful spring weather and may you have a blessed week!
Farmer Joshua and the Mitchell crew.