Rocks that surface in fields – or souls

By Dave Henning / October 26, 2021

“Mother Earth can birth some pretty big babies. . . .  Any farmer will tell you rocks that surface in fields are a nuisance, but they simply must be dealt with.  If they are left in the fields, even fist-sized stones can harm the farming equipment during cultivating, planting, and harvest.”- Jennifer Dukes Lee

“A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together.”- Ecclesiastes 3:5 (ESV)

In Chapter 17 (“The Slow Healing Work of God”) of Growing Slow, Jennifer Dukes Lee talks about the freeze/thaw cycle.  It absolutely astounds Jennifer that this cycle eventually produces enough force to heave buried stones to the surface.  Hence, the author’s husband, Scott, refers to this process as “a healing of the land.”

Therefore, the natural reset of tree and plant dormancy enables these precious things to survive.  Consequently, if trees need this break, we need to rethink running on all cylinders.  We also need the stillness of winter to heal our ‘land.’  Jennifer adds:

“But what this Growing Slow season has taught me is this: winter is not a season of death.  It is a season of life, a way-down-in-the-depth-of-it-all life.  Winter is alive, and dare I say, essential — not only to the land, but to us.”

Thus, Jennifer exhorts, you need to deal with the stones you’ve carried, long buried in your soul.  Because, the author counsels, hidden stones cut your insides.  That, in turn, causes a slow slaying of the soul.  So, allow winter to do its work.

Indeed, winter heals.  It reveals what hurts your soul.  But winter also reveals what makes your soul grow.

In conclusion, Jennifer cites the classic, poetic prayer of theologian and geologist Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.  Here’s an excerpt from his poem, entitled “Trust the Slow Work of God”:

“Only God could say what this new spirit/ gradually forming with you will be./ Give Our Lord the benefit of the believing/ that his hand is leading you,/ and accept the anxiety of feeling yourself/ in suspense and incomplete.”

Today’s question: What most helps you deal with rocks that surface in your soul?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Daily intentionality – Growing Slow”

About the author

Dave Henning

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