A couple of my blogging friends make lists once in awhile, so I thought I'd give it a shot. I've been thinking a lot lately about why I do what I do, and I don't really know that I can explain it in words, but I'll try.
1. I've never had a morning where the alarm went off and I thought "I really don't want to go to work today." - I have no idea what that feels like. There are things that I don't particularly enjoy doing, but they don't ruin an entire day for me.
2. Something new happens every day - I'll notice something that I've never noticed before, I'll break something like it's never been broken before, or see a different sunrise while I'm irrigating.
3. I get to work with my family - This can be a double edged sword, because we don't always see eye to eye. We do a pretty decent job of working things out when they go south, though. I enjoy working with my Dad and Grandpa... Most of the time, anyway. I think they would both tell you I get a little growly sometimes. I also know I would never do what I'm doing without them. Grandpa helped me rent my first land by going half and half on it with me, and Dad helped me buy my first tractor and planter by going half and half. Grandpa and I buy cattle together, but he likes to feed and take care of them, so he basically takes care of my cattle for me. I probably don't always show it, but I greatly appreciate what they have done for me.
4. I get to drive awesome machinery - Seriously, you've seen the pictures. You're telling me you wouldn't want to run some of that stuff?
5. I don't have a schedule - I was giving Pastor crap the other night at a meeting about his schedule and how full it is. He wanted to know what my schedule looked like. I said "Get up, drink coffee, go to work, come home, eat supper, go to bed." There are things that need to be done in a timely manner, but I get to decide when to do them. Those that know me would tell you that's a good thing, because I don't always do well with people telling me what to do.
6. To make money - Isn't that why you work?
7. To provide for my brothers and sisters in Christ - This is an attitude that I'm just beginning to take. As I understand it, I am here with this knowledge and ability to provide for those that can't. This is also a huge struggle for me, as I read more and more about how farmers are to blame for high obesity in children because of high fructose corn syrup, how cattle should only be grass fed, how chickens should be raised free-range, etc. It is hard to want to give my all for those that don't appreciate what I do or how I do it, but I know there are those out there that do, and besides, everyone needs to eat, whether they believe in what I'm doing or not. Christ calls on me to provide for His flock, so I'm trying my best to do that. And it makes farming a heck of a lot easier and less worrisome when you let God take control.
8. I am surrounded by God's beauty every day - On days when I'm not caught up in myself or the farm or the markets or something like that, this is the main thing I think about. There is a field I irrigate that has pipe on both sides, so you stand in the driveway and are surrounded by corn. One morning it was foggy, so you could not see to the end of the corn field. It felt like it went on forever. I stood there for quite awhile and just enjoyed. I get to watch these amazing crops we plant sprout and grow and develop. I see sunrises and sunsets. I drive around with the window of my pickup open and feel the breeze, smell freshly cut alfalfa, and hear corn leaves rustle against each other. I get to make the first tracks in fresh snow when I walk out to scoop feed bunks.
9. I love it - Even when nothing seems to go right, I would rather be farming than doing anything else. To me, that's the ultimate explanation of love for your career. How else can you explain it? When I'm laying out irrigation pipe and I'm hot and sweaty and pissed off, I'd rather be doing that than anything else. That is my least favorite job on the farm, but it's more enjoyable to me than the thought of working in an office. I love what I do. I might not be the best at it, but I have a passion for it, and God has equipped me with the knowledge and support system to do it.