Christ-Sufficient.

 

"Self Sufficiency" - is, according to the dictionary; "able to supply one's own needs without external assistance", or "having extreme confidence in one's own resources, powers, etc."

For us, it’s a mantra, a goal. A song sung by the homestead and back-to-the-land movements. It means to us, in essence, to remove your dependency from the clutches of the corporate system of grocery stores and nine-to-fives and to rely more on what you can produce in your own backyard and in your kitchen. It has a rather wide meaning and really any level of this “self-sufficiency “ is celebrate-able, in my opinion.

But honestly I don’t like the term at all. I mean, aren’t we, in our Christian walk, supposed to be killing “self”? Turning away from self and becoming LESS self-sufficient?


I’d rather be Christ-sufficient. I know I’m not at this moment, at least not as much as I’d like to be.  I think that should be my goal.

Grace-sufficient.

Prayer-sufficient. 

As I’ve said countless times, planting a garden is not really all there is to it. Planting prayer, and faith, and hope in Him is what we should be doing. Putting a seed in the ground and “May YOUR Will be done.”, and knowing that God grows things. God makes things productive. The doing is ours, the done is God’s. Our job is to work hard in season, and to have faith in God's promises us-ward.

"So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase." 1 Corinthians 3:7

When I was little I asked my Dad, in pure childish doubtfulness, why God didn’t really seem to perform miracles anymore.  He pointed at the apple tree outside my bedroom window, which was covered in little green baby apples. He said, “That’s a miracle.” I was dubious. He continued. “It’s not only a miracle that that tree has produced a fruit that is good and wholesome and enjoyable for us to eat, something that is truly amazing in itself, but why didn’t that tree produce peaches? Or apricots? Who or what made it produce apples? Christ did.” I know it doesn’t seem so amazing when I retell it here today but I was so struck, and it changed my thinking so drastically. Because why in the world do we just EXPECT an apple tree to produce apples? Just because we call it an apple tree? Or why does a seed in the ground so amazingly sprout and do such wondrous things as grow and thrive and make squash? I never want to lose that way of thinking. I want to be so awed by God’s amazing work and have a childlike appreciation of the smallest things. May God never let me lose that appreciation, that amazement He instilled in such a young me. I want to see His miracles everywhere I look.

A hail-damaged strawberry transplant that blossomed anyways. :)
So I’d like to propose that we change our way of speaking when it comes to describing what we are doing out there in the wee hours, down in the dirt and in the barns. I’d like to say that I am not working to be less dependent (although I know this is true in a sense), I’d like to say that I am becoming MORE dependent. Dependent on His Grace, His Mercy, on Him. Because I think by pulling our stake out of the world, by telling the world that we don’t need their lifestyle to survive, that we are casting ourselves completely on the mercy of Christ. And this doesn’t just mean praising Him when the crops come in and the milk is sweet and the fences miraculously stay together. This also means kissing the rod when the rain doesn’t fall and the lightning strikes and the cheese is a weird pile of something we don’t even want to taste. To say,“Not MY Will, Lord, but YOURS be done.” 


"Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls:Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation." Habakkuk 3:17-18

I believe by taking away the hum of the city and the insurance of the corner groceries, we are making ourselves more vulnerable to Christ and what he would have of us. We can hear Him out here. We are completely open to the voice of Our Saviour, and may we praise Him for his work in us, no matter the method.  


May he make me more Christ-sufficient day by day. May my ‘self’ die and may Christ be glorified by our work out here in the middle of Texas Hill Country, according to His perfect Will.  May He be glorified by His work in us, and may He be daily more evident to us in the small things.


"And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me." 2 Corinthians 12:9

Blessings.

Tracy M

10 comments:

  1. Yep:) We certainly need to say more 'Thank you Lord Thy will be done" and kissing the rod is definitely a good exercise in grace/faith. Great post Tracy! :)

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  2. Oh, to be 21 again with that spiritual insight. Two thumbs way up pointing towards Christ! Thanks for sharing, Tracy!

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  3. "Day by day; to see thee more clearly, love thee more dearly, day by day." - Godspell. We could never than God enough for all he has done for us; clearly and dearly.

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  4. I think Elijah summed it up best. God speaks in a still small voice. Removing ourselves from the "hum of the city and the insurance of the corner groceries" allows us to hear that voice also.

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  5. It seems a thousand years ago but when I was a child my grandparents prayed over their seed before planting, prayed for rain, prayed against pestilence, and for a good harvest, yet always were in thankfulness regardless of the situation. So many times they would encourage themselves witht he words of Paul, "Wherein ye have food and raiment, therein be content, for many have sought afer more and filled themselves with many sorrows". No so with my father's generation: Pivot irrigation replaced prayer for rain; hybrid seed replaced heirlooms; farm loans replaced debt free ground; and saddest of all, my father's generation of farmers never reached a level of happiness. It was always buy another field, borrow more money, drive a bigger pickup, live in a bigger home. Sad indeed. I was born in 1953 and at that time my grandparents lived in a very modest home in the shade of four very giant pecan trees. They both died in that same house, both well into their nineties, both happy and gave up the ghost singing praises to their Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. Never once do I remember my grandparents signing anything, worrying about money, or refusing to help a neighbor in need. I also never remember them being troubled about anything. They always said, "The word, "worry" is not in the bible". Gosh, where did we go wrong, and how do we get back to their attitued. You have written a truly outstanding article, the best, without question that I have ever read. May He be with you all the days of your life. Forever, Amen.

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  6. Job 37:1-18 came to mind. Good word Tracy!!!

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  7. http://snapwidget.com/v/861782323267347251#.VItgoMluKLN

    Lovely and funny. :) You should try and record the whole music video. Now I am curious, what did the lady say when she interupted you? Silly post, I know, but I could get used to listen to you singing for a while with that soothing and lovely voice. :)

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  8. By the way, I am posting as anonymous because I don't have any other account other than my email. It's weird writing like this and not being able to introduce myself in person. An odd request I know (concerning you singing), especially from an anonymous person you don`t know. I just thought I should give you a compliment when I browsed through your pictures and found that video of you singing. I find nothing more lovely than a woman who has a lovely and beautiful voice, singing (well, maybe there are even more lovelier things, but right now I can't think of any other :) ) It calms a person down.

    How a strange world we live in today. I have read some material about first pilgrim settlers that settled your land, America, and aabout the puritans, especially Oliver Cromwell and the Waldenses in northern Italy, if you know who they were http://www.pbministries.org/History/J.%20A.%20Wylie/the_waldenses.htm and here I am on your blog, hundreds of years later and looking at you is like looking into history or rather yesterday's history with todays technology. :) And to write this to you from across the ocean is yet another stupefying thing if you look from the past. Things which the real puritans and pilgrims couldn't think of and dream off. You don't need to approve this comment so that others don't read it, if you dont want to. I just wanted to write a bit more, so that I would not come across that much anonymous. :)

    Ok, take care, I hope you guys are doing well over there in Texas in these last days when the Lord is sending all kinds of abnormal weather throughout the whole world in judgment as you pointed out also with that Habakkuk passage. I just bought, a month ago, two young fig trees and I wonder will I ever be enjoying it's fruit (in about three years time that a young fig needs to produce fruit) or will the Lord come sooner than that happens? I believe the latter will take place. This year was pretty wet and still is, where I live, Job 37:13. As you said, we must trust in the Lord Jesus Christ, this will be more and more evident, as time passes until that Great day of the Lord.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1PKdctt04l0&list=UU_iyl730Fyf64LpDqHLH0Aw

    God bless you and yours, Tracy (and thanks for sharing a piece of your life on the internet, it is very refreshing to hear a God fearing woman these days and to read your posts and to look at your pictures :) ),

    Bye'

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