Thursday, February 09, 2006

One Step at a Time

I grew up in a chaotic household, to put it mildly. My mom had her hands full: separated from my dad, she spent her time working an assortment of part-time jobs with too many kids and too many pets left to fend for themselves. Ours was a God-less home and we children were undisciplined and unsupervised a good deal of the time. This is not to condemn my mother who did the best she could with what she knew, but to explain my nature. My response was to rebel and become what was completely antithetical to the environment in which I was raised. I do not thrive on chaos nor do I relish being in the midst of a crisis. Au contraire, I delight in putting things in order and keeping them that way.

When we bought this property a few months ago, at first I was totally in my element. While Dwayne was hard at work as our family's provider, I was industriously creating the blueprint for our new agrarian way of life: researching, organizing, planning. That's who I am. That's my gift. That's what I do best.........Hey, that's even what my name means! Wait!!!! {sound of brakes screeching} What comes first? The chicken or the egg? No, seriously. I mean......do we incubate eggs........or do we buy newly hatched chicks? Where do we get them? What's going in the garden? How do we make raised beds? What about an orchard? Dairy goats? Should we get a dog? As Winnie the Pooh would say, "Oh help and bother."

Beyond the swirling confusion of questions and ideas and list making and fact finding, there is One whose very presence is the peace I seek. I take a deep breath and settle into His calm sea of tranquility. Thank you, Lord. Where You have led, You will provide. Foolish me, thinking that I need to be in control when You are the author and finisher of my faith. You lead me beside still waters, You restore my soul. Quiet my mind that I may hear Your still small voice in the inner depths of my heart. Where You lead, so shall I follow. One step at a time.

7 Comments:

Blogger Lynn said...

Emily, you sound so much like me! "I do not thrive on chaos nor do I relish being in the midst of a crisis." That is me -- and everything was seemingly out of control when we moved to our land. To be honest, it has taken me from 9/2004 until recently to feel like maybe I'm beginning to settle in and accept things as they come, and to also accept the fact that the Lord is in control. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

5:01 PM  
Blogger Herrick Kimball said...

Hi Emily,

I suggest you get a few chicks, not eggs to incubate. I say this because we have incubated eggs and it is an amazing and wonderful thing but sometimes, for whatever reasons, it doesn't work out and you end up with rotten eggs, and that is discouraging. So start with chicks and try incubating later. That's my advice on that subject.

Beyond that, I suggest you wade into agrarianism slowly (but surely!). There is so much to learn and experience. That's one of the great things about the agrarian life.

I wrote a post called "The Sermon I'll Never Forget" at my blog (it's somewhere back in the archive). The sermon was about taking life "One Step at a Time."

Best wishes with your agrarian adventure!

6:24 PM  
Blogger The Bradshaws said...

Emily and Lynn, I know exactly how you feel. We, too, moved in 9/04, and it is only in the last few months that I've felt I'm actually ready to move ahead on things, even though I still often feel overwhelmed with all those "things." Of course, we've moved ahead, anyway. Looking back--and at the present--it all seems to be a matter of simply moving ahead on the things God sets before us--whether I feel prepared or not. God is in control, and therefore, my "readiness" mindset is basically irrelevant, but I'm a lot happier and more at-peace when my mind is set on the Lord and His leading.

12:04 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

Lynn,
I think my biggest obstacle has been impatience, wanting to be at the end of the journey with all the accomplishments behind me rather than savoring each step along the way. The Lord is teaching me to enjoy each moment as it comes; the mistakes and trials are what refines us.

Herrick,
Having been a long-time reader of your blog, I know your advice has merit and so I intend to take it. (Now, where to get those chicks?) I'm headed over to your blog to read the post you recommended. Thank you!

Bradshaws - Mary I presume?,
Thank you for the affirmation. One of my favorite lessons in Scripture is that of what befell Peter once he took his eyes off Christ when walking on the water. Knowing that, the Lord gives me a multitude of opportunities to practice what I've learned! :)

2:38 PM  
Blogger HomesteadHerbs said...

I've got so many things that I would like to do...a long list!! But it all can't be done now (as I wish it would be!!). Resources, time, know-how all defy the list! Maybe after I've been here another 5 years, I'll have that list wittled down a little!! God in His perfect timing will give it to us as we can handle it! In the meantime, I live 'vicariously' through others who are ahead of me!

Chaos?? You mean life isn't supposed to be chaotic? I've never heard such a thing!! (hehehehehe)

9:36 PM  
Anonymous Jane said...

Emily, In the midst of a major snowstorm this Sunday morn, I logged on to your blog & your comments were so moving. I had just done my devotions & this added to the serenity of the moment.
I was asked to send out e-mails last nite of services being cancelled for today; & this morning I reflected that we are so blessed with instant technology. But nothing can surpass the speed of God's messages to us & all mankind. Also, in the slowness of receiving His messages in His time, not ours. Oh for patience!

Enjoy your day with family as you 'wallow' in the snow. Good for the soil, as oldtimers say!

6:26 AM  
Blogger Emily said...

Christine,
I am the consummate list-maker! Down to the most minute detail. I sometimes wonder if I'm having trouble accomplishing anything because I'm so busy writing it all down! Chaos is acceptable as long as it is organized chaos! ;^D

Jane,
The Lord is faithful to remind me when I'm getting a little too helter-skelter and my plans are getting ahead of His timing. Who am I to argue with perfection?
P.S. Would those be Minnesotan old-timers? :)

2:43 PM  

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