Faith, hope and love
Faith, hope, and love are the three most powerful words in the English language. Here in the heartland they are the foundation of our lifestyle. Farming and ranching require a special kind of people. The kind of people that make their living on crops that rely on rain and livestock that sometimes are not worth the feed that has been fed to them. This life makes hardy people, people who can stare a challenge in the face head on and rise to the needs at hand. Why are faith, hope and love so important? Because without them this life we lead would be nearly impossible.
You could argue that faith is the most important of these. To farm or ranch one has to possess an enormous amount of faith. Many of us put our faith in Christ. We trust that if we prepare the fields and plant the seed, or turn the bulls out, the crops will receive rain and the cows will breed up. Other than a faith in Christ, we have faith that we can produce food for a nation and provide for our families in the process. By faith we continue to plant crops and turn out bulls year after year and have a product to market in the fall. Faith can move mountains and anyone that has ever faced a drought, a fire, a flood, or any other disaster that has changed their life will be the first to tell you that faith brought them through the worst of it.
Hope is what allows farms and ranches to pass from one generation to another. Everyday we go to work with the hope of making a better life for our children and building a legacy that they can proudly build on. Hope makes life on the farm promise brighter days are ahead after a late spring blizzard kills a quarter of the calf crop, or a June hailstorm wipes out the wheat crop before it can be put in the bin. Without hope there is no strength to start over, but with it, we are able to shrug off the bad times and move on with the seasons.
Love is the tie that binds. Our love for the land is what drives us to improve it with windbreaks, terraces, and better grazing practices. Love is what makes us go out in a blizzard to break ice and feed cows. Its what makes neighbors harvest a crop for a friend who has been hurt or experienced a tragedy. Love is what makes this way of life the envy those who don’t live it. In the end it will be the love that you had for your family and the land that you took care of that people will remember you by.
As you go to work tomorrow, remember to be hopeful that what you are doing is making the world a better place. Have faith that you are part of a bigger plan, and above all show love. Brighten your day and someone around you. That’s all for this time. God bless and keep tabs on your side of the Barbed Wire.
On a personal note, I write this months column with the loss of a dear friend heavy on my mind. My friend embodied faith, hope and love in every aspect of his life. He’s gone way to soon, but through his lasting legacy of kindness the tiny community of Rush, Colo., will move on. If you have a minute hug your loved ones and tell them you love them this week.
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