A farmer plans for his crop all through the winter, then prepares (cultivates) the soil in spring, and finally plants the seeds of a new crop as the spring ends. Throughout the summer, he works on maintaining and protecting his crop, from drought, insects, and weeds. And then at the end of the summer, he finally begins his harvest, gathering in this precious crop that he has worked so hard to grow.
Can you see the similarities to our efforts as parents? We plan, plant, grow, nurture, and somewhere along the way, the "harvest" concept can get lost in the search for both shoes, the car keys, the "right" curriculum, and on and on.
Just like raising a stand of fruit trees (or maple trees, pecan trees, etc.), so goes the way of raising a child:
- A season to prune and maintain the plants themselves (the physical needs as well as the emotional needs).
- A season to fertilize to invigorate the plant's production of fruit (talking, reading, sharing, putting information and caring into their lives).
- A season to tend the fruits as they develop (keeping an eye on their interests, activities, etc.).
- A season of harvest, when the fruit is enjoyed and preserved, keeping an eye towards the future for the next season of growth (protecting them from harm during tough times and planning the next season of growth).
- And then, of course, the cycle begins anew, as the cycle of life thankfully continues.
See you next time, coffee in hand, when we'll be talking about keeping a harvest journal to help keep perspective and count it all joy…