Sunday, April 20, 2014

Who Are You Looking For

Today is Easter. When the friends of Jesus found an empty tomb and looked in it must have been a little scary. There sat a couple of angels. They asked the ladies why they were looking for the living among the dead.
 When we last visited early last Sunday morning it had just started raining. We ended up with close to 5 inches.
 Lighting is an example of our Creator's power. It split this tree in half from the very tiny top to the large bottom.
 This bird's pride got the best of him. He tried to fight off a decoy and now he is going to be a meal for Mike and his family.
 Well late in the week the weather gave us a green light and we were headed back to the field.
 This is Pablo bringing the sprayer a load of product that will keep the weeds from taking over this season.
 The planters ran on Saturday. Soil conditions are more important to us than soil temps for successful germination and early growth. The calendar says it will soon warm up.
NH3 application is wrapping up. University Hospital in Iowa City reported five NH3 accidents this spring. Those folks involved would have been treated by the same doctors that treated BJ. We are so thankful for his healing and eyesight after last fall's accident.
 This is a group of friends I have learned to love and respect. We met as a board and staff of the Family Leader at Dave and Cheryl's home in West Des Moines. A dedicated bunch that is continually pushing for conservative values in our political arena.
I have visted with you before about our neighbor Edgar. We attended the funeral of his wife this week. Our sympathies and prayers go out to Edgar and his children Julie, Kim, and Eddie and their families. 
Have you ever looked up and wondered and worried what happens at death. Well you don't need to if you know and have a relationship with the One that loves us, came down to earth and paid for our wrongs by dying for us, and then conquered death by rising on the third day. That's what we are celebrating today. He's worth looking for.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Wheels In Motion

Good morning. Today is Sunday. We are thankful for a day of rest. I don't know how folks work 7 days a week. That's not how God set it up when He created the world and us.
We are also thankful for the two to four tenths of rain we received so far. We have no gas in the tank when it comes to subsoil moisture.
Spring finally arrived. It always does. We had a big week of anhydrous. NH3 is two forms of nitrogen. Nitrogen is a must if you are going to grow corn. Thanks to Alex, Mark, and BJ for keeping the FS bars going.
Kurt and Brad with Matt as a fill in  worked as a team hauling their own smoke for Cargill. They applied for a customer where they pulled the fertilizer 50 miles one way. They put over 2000 miles on Kurt's pickup this week. 
Speaking of fertilizer one day Zach said, "hey Grandpa come see our cow poop. We are going to put it on our garden." Now that's what I call on the job training.
Soil temps started out the week in the low 40s and finished the week in the mid 50s. Seedcorn takes 50 degrees to germinate and grow.
We started the week with one planter anticipating warmer temps. Crop insurance doesn't cover replant on corn planted before April 11. However we have never replanted due to planting in early April.
By late in the week we were running both planters with Mike even helping out one day with the 8 row and IH 1066.
Sometimes the wheels get to going too fast and as a grandpa it's our job to say, what's your hurry.
Sometimes we get stuck in a rut and the wheels of motion go too slow.
Once in a while we break down and the wheels come off. In life just like in machinery when the wheels fall off you take it a day at a time and trust Someone who can fix it.
Once in a while the wheels turn upside down. That's when you call for help, make a plan, tackle the problem, and get back in the drivers seat.
All winter we got seed in. This week a lot of seed went out. Thank to Karl for coming up with a plan and making it happen. Below Dana, our boss in the seed business, is loading his family's seed order.
Dana's family farms near Lytton, Iowa. His father Roger is past eighty and still going strong farming with a son and a nephew. Dana's father's favorite pasttime is hauling cattle for his neighbors.
Today is not just a Sunday. It's Palm Sunday. It's the day some 2000 years ago when our Lord rode into Jerusalem on a donkey with the people rejoicing thinking He was going to be their King. He was but not like they thought. Little did they know that our Lord was putting the wheels in motion for the church leaders to call for His death just 5 days later. He did it for us. Next week we celebrate that He conquered death, paid for our wrongs, and wants us for His own.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Are You A Close Friend

So I'm not asking if you have a close friend. What does it take to be a close friend?
Being a close friend isn't always easy. It involves selflessness, being dependable, trustworthy, honest, supportive, caring, and a good listener.
It's easy to be a close friend to grandkids. At least while they're young enough they can't  crawl off your lap.
Young parents walk a fine line between being a close friend and being a parent to their children. They are to be both at the same time. Parenting and friendships sometimes have different job descriptions.
Close friendships with grown children are a blessing. You need to be a parent when they need one so they know you care. You also need to be a friend and give them enough room and responsibility to have their own independence.
A close friend will put others ahead of themselves.
A close friend will be genuinely happy for others accomplishments and successes.
A close friend goes above and beyond the call of duty sensing when they need to hang around and when they need to give others space.
If you are a close friend you are an encourager and folks like you around because you brighten up the day.
A close friends word is good. He keeps his promises, doesn't forget appointments, and answers his calls.
A close friend apologizes when making a mistake. No ones perfect. It's much easier to acknowledge a wrong than to deny it.
 So can God be a close friend? I know, He is in charge of the whole universe. He is so powerful and almighty our little minds can't even fully comprehend Him. However He made us. He saved us. He loves us.
We are God's adopted children and He cares about us. So what's going on when He doesn't feel close. Maybe He's reminding us it's not about us. Maybe He's teaching us dependence. Maybe He's building character in us. Maybe we are the ones that moved farther away. 
Back in the Bible times King David knew what it was like to be a close friend. He also knew what it was like to need one. In Psalms 145 he says, "The Lord is close to all who call on Him in truth. He fulfills the desires of those who fear Him, He hears their cry and saves them. The Lord watches over those that love Him."

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Making A Difference

As we go through life we never know what's coming down the tracks. We do know however we were all created for a purpose and are working at making a difference. 

On Tuesday it snowed. Making a difference is defined as having an effect on something or someone.

On Friday we had a thunderstorm and hail. Our examples outlive our achievements.
Ten years ago these were young teenage friends in high school. Today they have families of their own. Friday evening they took their 4-wheelers out for a get together before a busy spring.

Dr. Tim and his medical student finished their surgery schedule early so they went out for a tenderloin together and then came to see a farm. Sie(See) immigrated from Vietnam when he was eight and grew up out east where there are no farms. Being a mentor rather than just an instructor makes a difference.

Last evening was the Cattleman's Banquet. Being part of an organization that promotes a cause or product that you believe in makes a difference. 

Dr. Mark straightens me out if I lift more than I'm rated for. Doctors are used to make a difference as they help people.
An effective pastor has a selfless job. Besides being a husband, father, friend, and son-in-law, a pastor is always making a difference in the lives of others.

Speaking of pastors Mark has a congregation of 35 members. Last year believing he could make a difference and believing in a cause he ran for county supervisor and was successful by just 20 votes winning over the establishment and a former state senator.

Sam came to visit and wants a chance to make a difference in Washington. He is running for a US Senate seat.

We were privileged to spend an evening with a friend this past week. God has used Rick to make a difference in our country over the years.

Grandmas enjoy making a difference. This Grandma does an awesome job of helping out in lots of ways when needed.

 Kathy is a friend and fellow worker at a crop retail outlet who we help. She definitely makes a difference where she works. Below she is getting to know Jackson, Kurt and Emily's little guy.

About twelve years ago our family incorporated it's custom work business. Back then I thought about what we wanted to accomplish. God had given us work, help, abilities, and resources. Obviously we wanted to support our families. However we are also called to have an effect on others. Below is BCF's mission statement.  
The goal for our family partnership is to be respected in our community and trusted by the people we work for. Our mission is to give full effort, be cutting edge, not scared of responsibility, and care about others. If we Care more than others think is wise, Risk more than others think is safe, Dream more than others think is practical, Expect more than others think is possible, and Give God the glory for our accomplishments, we will make a difference.