I didn’t grow up on a farm. Although, boy, did I grow up during my experiences on a farm. I remember the early mornings. I remember being told to just go home because I got my gloves wet in the winter. I remember blood, sweat and tears. I remember being told I could go over it or through it. It quickly became a saying that was more than just taking a horse over a jump. It was real life. It was harder than any level of Candy Crush, and worse than any selfie without makeup. There was no filter that could make it better.
It was real and it was hard, but it was beautiful.
I watched this weekend as girls went in and out of a cabin without closing the door to the wrap-around deck. It drove me crazy. I grew up with people saying, “Shut the door. Were you raised in a barn?” Now that I have actually raised a kid in a barn, I find this little saying quite humorous. It seemed that the only kid that didn’t leave the door open this past weekend is the one that was raised in the barn. It makes me laugh every time. And you want to know why she doesn’t leave the door open? The wrath of her mother if that door is left open and an animal escapes, is enough to motivate her to make sure she shuts the door.
This, my friends, is barn life.
On a farm, closing the door or gate becomes habit. It is always putting the animal first. Their safety is always paramount. And more importantly, it is about finishing what you start. My little girl has learned this time and time again and it hasn’t always been pretty. It has involved her feet being stepped on by 1000 pound animals. It includes feeding and watering when it’s cold outside, or when you’re so tired you just want to crawl into bed. It includes caring for sick animals and not knowing whether they will make it through the night. It requires you to always “close the door” even when you are too tired to pay attention to the details.
Often I wonder if God looks down at me and says, “Good grief, Anna, close the door. Were you raised by the world?” And the older I get, the more I understand what He means. I lose sight of details allowing His Kingdom plan to be more Spirit-filled. I don’t close the door on bad choices and toxic relationships. I try to sleep but keep peeking back at the “thing” with which my heart is wrestling instead of closing the door and resting in the peace of God’s provisions. I leave that crack in the door between my will and His will.
I wonder how much more beautiful it would be if I just closed the door as a beautiful daughter of the King that is regarded higher than the angels, and less like a kid of this world covered in mud and muck? I know I’d much rather be that little barn girl as I walk with my sweet Father. I want to dream big and finish what I start. And when I lay my head down at night, I want to have sweet and peaceful dreams knowing I did my Kingdom work for the day and can truly rest.
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