This is continued from “Polyface Farm (Part 1)“
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.”
~ John 10:10 -11 ~
Our Personal Applications (not specifically mentioned at the farm, but from what we learned)
- Apply everything we learned to our family and children – While they love children (which was obvious while we were there), they didn’t specifically give parenting advice. However, so much of what we learned about caring for the land and animals is true for children as well.
- The world wants us to plug into the systems of the world.
- It wants us to plug into the food systems of processed foods and industrial farming, producing sicker children (and adults) with higher costs.
- It then wants us to plug into the medical systems, with all the costs that come with that!
- It wants us to plug our children into the state-run education system, to be taught that the other systems are normal and good and the first place to turn for hope (while leaving God out of everything).
- It wants us to plug into the financial systems of needing to buy everything, while forgetting the skills for how to survive without the (failing) systems. When we can grow our own food, and thus eat healthier and become healthier, we begin to break these systems and the financial binds they place on us. We can then barter for needs that we can’t provide ourselves and grow a healthy community!
- By God’s mercy, we are slowly and progressively weaning out of these systems. Our family has been blessed to have no need for sick visits as we have focused on treating our bodies (the temple of the Holy Spirit) the way he created with God-made food. As we have seen his work and the growing need, we have grown more confident and passionate to share His work in us through His food as we understand more and hear others’ similar stories. We think of it as “becoming more human” as we grow our bodies the way God intended and was the way things were done until the recent development of modern medicine, modern agriculture and the industrial systems.
- By being set free from the medical system we had very peaceful home births (our first birth was in a hospital, which was a very different experience, though still a drug free, natural birth).
- By being set free from the education system we have been able to educate our children at home. This has allowed us all (not just the children) to have a better understanding of how God created all of his creation (and all we learn about it) to work together to point to Him! It has also allowed our children to discover and develop interests that they may not have otherwise discovered.
- “Home-discipling” (as we prefer over “homeschooling”) has also allowed the blessing of real social interaction. Instead of just having a few hours in highly controlled situations with everyone the same age, or only being home for a short time in the evening, our family is learning to work through difficulties and conflicts and to grow together. Home-discipling isn’t about our always being a perfect match and getting along… It’s about learning to honor God as we live, love, forgive and grow together (even when it hurts)! Not every family is called to homeschool, but all Christian parents are called to make disciples at home and carefully and prayerfully consider what God would have them include in their child’s education.
If this way of farming (discussed more in Polyface Farm Part 1) produces abundant, healthy food, with lower expenses, risks and dependence on outside systems why don’t all farms work this way? This will be discussed in “Polyface Farm Part 3”.