Tuesday, October 22, 2013


Life is very busy for those raised on a farm. Whether tending a large amount of acreage. or a small track of land, there are always things that cry out for constant devotion and attention.  It becomes a ritual following the demands of the land--a covenant between man and the soil he cultivates, nurtures, and oversees. Early morning awakenings....a big breakfast on the table...chores carried out...a long, long day of work.   Each day repeated.

In early spring the soil is prepared for planting.  By mid-summer the crops are pointing upwards to the sky, drawn by the warmth of the sunlight.  Life is good.  Work continues.  Hoeing the crops is a necessary activity in order to weed out any unnecessary plants, allowing the crops to grow tall and produce as they should.  Harvesting the produce and properly storing it for future us are both carried out with special care and attention.  Various crops are ready for picking at different times of the year.  Peas, butter beans, okra, potatoes (both sweet and Irish), onions, cucumbers, and squash have their time, as well as peanuts and watermelons.  Apples are ripe on the trees.  Picking apples, cutting apples, and preparing apples for consumption encompasses the whole family.  The pigs are fed the scraps--apple cores and apple peelings.

There is early corn and late corn.  There is corn for human consumption, and another for animal feed.  The crops and animals are dependent on each other, and the family’s existence is supported by both. There is always activity.  Yet, more important is the faith required and acknowledged.  It is vital to this way of life.

Though, there is  little time for recreation and entertainment,  when Sunday comes there is a needed break in the weekly routine.  Time is set aside for going to church.  But even on the Lord’s Day, there are chores carried out before leaving home. Allowing time for duties to be performed, the church service purposely begins at 11:00 A.M.    Animals are fed.  Eggs are gathered.  Cows milked.  Then everyone gets ready for the journey ahead.  Everyone wears their “Sunday best.”   

It is recognized that Sunday is a day of rest just like the Good Book admonishes.  It is part of life’s cycle--work during the week and rest on Sunday.  Sunday’s rest is certainly a change of routine, but it is not totally restful.  Nor does  Sunday’s rest  indicate any type of laziness.  Meals are needed.  There are mouths to be fed.  Guest are invited for a Sunday meal.  Maybe even the preacher!  The stove is heated up,  ready to cook a wonderful spread.  There is always food on the table.
After a big Sunday meal, children play in the yard.

 Life is simple, but  hard.  Life is rewarding, yet a struggle.  Life’s duties start with the rising of the sun.  Rest comes with the setting of the sun.  So is life on the Kilgore farm--a place establishing memories of family-- sweat and tears-- planting and sowing-- working and rest--joys and grief--life and death.  There is a time and a season for it all.

“There is an occasion for everything, and a time for every activity under heaven;
a time to give birth and a time to die; a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal; a time to tear down and a time to build;
a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance;
a time to throw stones and a time to gather stones; 
a time to embrace and a time to avoid embracing;
a time to search and a time to count as lost; 
a time to keep and a time to throw away;
a time to tear and a time to sew; a time to be silent and a time to speak;
a time to love and a time to hate; a time for war and a time for peace.”
Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8



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