Lost on Gratitude Road

A few weeks ago, as Autumn was just in its earliest days, I decided it would be a great idea to visit an area farm stand as the harvest was […]

A few weeks ago, as Autumn was just in its earliest days, I decided it would be a great idea to visit an area farm stand as the harvest was coming in and perhaps, buy some of the wonderful things our farmers produce. It would be worth the trip!

The day was summerlike, but the trees told us Fall was around the corner as we arrived and started browsing. There were several workers there, but we were met with indifference. I thought I may have made a mistake they were open. They were. We decided not to purchase, not because of that, more that we really didn’t need anything too badly, and somehow, we just didn’t find what we came for. We headed back to our van. My mistake was not calling ahead, probably.

A young couple in the parking lot was trying to get their young boy out of a stroller and with some struggle he fell onto the gravel and began to scream. The couple immediately and loudly began to argue about who was to blame for it, using language so foul I was glad my fellow traveler was hearing impaired. Annoyed with them, I internally began telling myself “Today is some kind of mistake.”

Leaving, we suddenly found ourselves mired in a series of detours, on unfamiliar, unmarked back roads in farm country. No matter what we tried, we could not make sense of where exactly we were. We passed mile after mile of farms, some enormous, some small, ridges of rocks, dairy cows, corn stalks and old sunflowers waving us on, dotted with farmhouses where the caretaking families lived. Lost, internally I told myself, “Today is some kind of mistake”.

As I drove on in frustration, it finally dawned on me-this was not a mistake at all. The Lord was trying to get my attention here. These countless farms I was seeing represented the sacrifice of many to feed so many others, including me, even if indirectly. It was also obvious just how hard these people worked the land. It was moving and humbling. I’m convinced now getting lost was not some kind of mistake. It was the Lord, teaching.

It seems you can walk into any store these days and find something with words like “thankful”, “grateful” or “blessed” printed on it. That’s good, right? But perhaps I had become numb to these things, in living life day to day. Perhaps I had forgotten the sacrifices others are making for me. It might be good to just get lost on Gratitude Road once in a while.

-Bruce LaCrosse

As is my custom, I share a sketch I have done on this theme.

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