I will sail my vessel

There is something about the view of rolling Iowa hills from the window of a tractor that makes singing along to the radio especially exciting. It’s like “singing in the shower” with an incredible view!

I’m not normally one to like country music (or at least admit it), but it does seem strangely fitting with this backdrop. I will say the songs that really get me come from my childhood. I’d wake up early (when it was my turn to help with the morning chores) and go outside before the world woke up. It’s funny, country was the only station that ever seemed to work out there in that barn. I listened to Paul Overstreet, George Strait, Alan Jackson, and… Garth Brooks.

The other day, we were farming my grandpa’s land and The River by Garth Brooks came on the local radio station.

I’ll go ahead and admit it – I rustled up my best twang and sang from a deep place in my chest about sailing my vessel until the river runs dry – following my dreams like a vessel on a river.

I wondered how many times my grandpa said, “Well, we’re just gonna keep on farming until the Lord tells us different.”

With eight kids, nobody would have questioned him if he’d given up and moved on to something with a bit more promise of provision. But, in all my growing up years, I never heard his kids wishing their childhood happened any different.

The Lord certainly guided his way as a father as much as a farmer (of course, he had a wife who wouldn’t let him forget it). Maybe my grandpa’s quiet time with the Lord happened when he rode his horse out behind the barn to check the fields. I know my grandma would do her Bible study in the station wagon in the garage, where the kids were told she would not (under any circumstances) be disturbed.

I don’t know how they did it.

There are so many stories. Maybe someday I’ll start gathering and assembling all the stories I’ve heard that had this beautiful backdrop. 

Maybe someday I’ll have stories of my own, like packing my family of 10 into a 4 door sedan for a road trip or setting a feast for dinner (even in hard times) and watching it come out, “just right.”

Maybe someday I can …

let LOVE fly like cRaZy
in a way that generations after will remember.

3 thoughts on “I will sail my vessel

  1. I can tell you that his quiet time came milking his cows–probably just as your Dad did til he quit milking. Your Grandpa’s “crop” wasn’t the main concern as it is for most farmer’s nowadays–it was how the cows were and selling those pigs. Any “words of wisdom” or discussions/disagreements/parenting from your Grandpa came to us when we were helping him milk…whether we wanted it or not!

    1. Good to know. I’ll have to ask about some of that cow milking philosophy next time I stop by. Just out of curiosity, what was one of those lessons he taught you during chores?

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