Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A Shocking Lesson

For those of you not familiar with growing and harvesting peanuts, I'll give you a brief lesson! Or maybe I should say that I'll show you what I've observed John David doing!

Much preparation, time, effort, and hard work went into raising this year's crop. The extreme heat and little rain made it even more difficult. Lots of watering was necessary in order to keep the plants growing. But grow they did!

When he determined the peanuts were mature - and only a seasoned gardener can make that call - he pulled up the vines and put them in the sun to begin the drying process.

The next step involved "shocking" the peanuts. Vines were stacked on a pole - one that he cut in the woods - and left to fully dry.

This is what a fully-loaded shock looks like! For about two weeks the peanuts will be cured by the sun.

You probably notice a younger crop, still green and making peanuts, in the background. Those are the rows our grandkids planted and will be ready to pull up in the future. The grands love parched peanuts and enjoyed helping their Poppa plant them.

In a few days, John David will pick all the peanuts off the vines - a very time-consuming process. Then all the hard work and weeks of waiting will pay off, for we'll have plenty of peanuts to enjoy during the cool fall nights - if cool nights ever arrive here! Around our house, LSU games and parched peanuts just go together!

Planting and harvesting . . . sowing and reaping . . . just a natural process in the life of a gardener or farmer. And so it is with our lives as Christians. Sowing and reaping . . . planting seeds and harvesting. It doesn't happen without plans, effort, patience, more effort, watering, a mindset that sees what the seeds can become and a faith that looks to God to "give the increase."

Wouldn't it be good if we could see the fruits of all our labors - all piled up - like that shock of peanuts? Sometimes, however, the results are hidden to us - but never to God! He sees . . . He knows. Always.

One day, when our sowing days are over, we'll see and fully grasp the extent of all our planting and tending and nurturing. And I have a feeling that if we've sowed bountifully as II Corinthians 9:6 suggests, we just might be shocked!

Sowing in the morning, sowing seeds of kindness,
Sowing in the noontide and the dewy eve;
Waiting for the harvest, and the time of reaping,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.
~Knowel Shaw - Bringing in the Sheaves, 1874~


Mari said...

Very interesting! I've never seen peanuts growing before and knew nothing about harvesting them!

Ginny said...

LOVING this!! First, I did not know anything about harvesting peanuts! So I learned something! Once you bring them inside, how long will they last? And you are so right about not seeing many of the fruits of our labors, though we will in the next life. Maybe even impressions we left that will surprise us! And talk about shocking, I was so shocked to see this song at the end! But reading the words made it all fit together so beautifully!! This is just a wonderful devotional, I wish you could get it published somewhere. You may say I'm just going nuts over it!

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hi Glenda, This was a great post... Like Ginny, I knew NOTHING about harvesting peanuts... I know that I LOVE to eat them ---but never realized what all goes into the harvesting of them... SO interesting... Thanks for sharing.

We used to sing Bringing in the Sheaves when I was a little girl... I'm not sure that I even knew what sheaves were back then.. ha

God Bless.

Becky said...

My husband eats peanuts every single day. And he keeps some in his desk at work too. They are a healthy snack .. better than chocolate bars. And my grandpa was a peanut farmer but I never was there when the harvest came in so I had no clue how it happened.

Sharon Lynne said...

I love peanuts. And I never researched how they grew. I've always taken them for granted. This is so interesting. I appreciate the peanut farmers!

Your reminder is so encouraging——that the seeds we've planted in our children's lives, or other lives, may grow to a bountiful harvest one day.

Dorothy said...

Growing up on the farm gave me first-hand experience with raising and harvesting peanuts. Daddy did it a little differently, but with the same delicious peanuts in the end. We had a water well near the field and after the peanuts were pulled up, we washed them in tubs of water while they were still on the vine. Then Daddy and his three daughters had the job of picking them off. We placed them on sheets of tin in a single layer to dry in the sun. After that, you could usually find a pan a parched peanuts on the rack above our old wood stove, most any time you dropped by our house!

Christine said...

How interesting. Thanks for sharing.

Southern Lady said...

Wow, that brought back memories. My grandpa used to plant peanuts. I just loved eating them. I would eat them raw, parched, or boiled. I loved the smell of the peanuts right after they were pulled from the soil. Thanks for evoking that lovely memory. Carla

Dawn said...

There are several of you blogging friends who have a gift of seeing lessons in everyday things. I think there should be a blogger's devotional book collaboration! Great stuff.

S. Etole said...

Had no idea of the work involved to reap such a tasty treat ...

B. Meandering said...

Interesting lesson---thank you.
I needed the reminder too that all of our sowing will one day reap a harvest and to be patient.

Karen said...

Wonderful post. I loved learning about harvesting peanuts, and your words of truth and wisdom are truly inspiring.