Our family has a small farm where we grow berries, blueberries and blackberries. We open it up for u-pick and sell at farmers’ markets. Summer is a busy time of year, and it stretches our schedules, energy and patience. Our farm has a story all it’s own. It is a lot of work, with rewards in the faces of little ones who arrive clean and leave with juicy purple cheeks and smiles. I love that part.
During harvest, the blueberries get us started and then blackberries. It’s all balanced for a couple of weeks, we keep up with picking everything. Then the blackberries really begin to ripen, the Tipping Point. There are more blackberries than we have customers for, and we can’t possibly freeze it all! The ripe fruit begins to fall to the ground. It can be hard to watch, and know that it’s going to waste.
Last week, I had the blessing of a sweet friend and her daughter stop by the farm for the first time. It had been a while since we last saw each other, I teared up when I saw her get out of the car! She has been witness to this farm since the early first steps, and to share it with those who knew it from a dream is special. There are so many who have prayed and bore witness to this farm’s creation; supporting, praying and offering of themselves and time. What a blessing!
As the three of us stood in the field, sharing and catching up a bit, my friend asked if she could pray for me. And I think I will forever remember something she prayed for. The timing was perfect, God knew that I would need to hear and remember it. She prayed, thanking Him for the abundance of our farm, “And let fall to the ground what you would have fall.” Yes.
We have reached the tipping point. Ripe berries are falling to the ground. But Lord, let fall to the ground what you would have fall to the ground. Does it seem wasteful? Perhaps. But I am choosing to see abundance. I’m am choosing to trust. I am choosing to thank him for the provision of so much fruit and the right people to pick it. I am choosing to cast that anxiety upon Him, because He cares about every little detail.
This weekend we experienced 6.5” of much needed rain. But as we stayed (for the most part) warm and dry inside, I knew the berries were being knocked off in the rain. “And let fall to the ground what you would have fall.” I am choosing to be thankful for the quiet rest and abundance of rain.
As I picked blackberries in the rain on Sunday for another dear friend, the story of Ruth and Boaz came to mind. Boaz allowed Ruth to come behind his young men who were harvesting barley, gleaning from what had been dropped to the ground. Then Boaz instructed his men to leave extra for Ruth, and to keep an eye of safety upon her. What a kind and gentle man.
Reaching out to pick one ripe, rain soaked berry on Sunday led to three falling to the ground. “And let fall to the ground what you would have fall.” It was hard to be upset about the falling fruit, because I was surrounded by abundance! And just as Ruth gleaned abundance from the ground, I could have done the same at that moment in time.
The Holy Spirit has been leading me over and over to 1 Peter 5:6-7 over the past few weeks, and I’m grateful. “Humble yourself, therefore, under the mighty had of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he care for you.”
I’m casting the anxiety, thanking Him for the abundance and letting fall to the ground what He would have fall to the ground.
Are we planning to pick loads of blackberries this week? Yes, and we will work and praise Him for the provisions. We will trust and keep moving forward. In fact after posting this, I am on my way to the field because the phone just rang from a restaurant who would like a lovely sized order. Today!
Growing up, I’ve heard this many times from my Dad, “From abundance, came abundance, and yet abundance remained.” We are bearing witness to this in our fields right now. Thank you Lord, for abundance, peace and provision.