Perserverance is the steadfast pursuit of an objective despite obstacles, difficulties, or discouragement.Albert Schweitzer
Albert Schweitzer would have probably made a good farmer. Not that he would have had the time. He was already an accomplished theologian, philosopher, writer, musician, and physician. He was a true renaissance man in his day. Even when mankind could be at its worst, Schweitzer could see through it all to the good in humanity. In fact, he was so adept at seeing the good that he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his philosophical views on the “Reverence of Life.”
We can learn a lot from people like Schweitzer. Especially from his views on perseverance despite the obstacles life throws our way.
And life will throw in obstacles. All kinds of obstacles. In the last month alone here on the homestead we’ve dealt with substantial power losses, storm damage, interruptions in internet access, plumbing issues, vehicle troubles, animal conflicts, and seemingly ever increasing demands on our time from off-farm employment.
It’s nearly enough to make you feel sick. At times all of these compounding difficulties can feel a bit overwhelming. At times it feels like all we do is manage one crisis until the next crisis arises.
It’s in these moments of doubt that we sometimes begin to wonder if all the work of homesteading is really worth it. We may even be tempted to question whether or not we’re just making more work for ourselves through pursuing our homesteading dreams. Those may not be the thoughts we want to be having regarding homesteading, but they creep in just the same.
That’s when we need a quick gut check.
Homesteading is a romantic notion. But not one to become so enamored with that we overlook the realities and the hard work that homesteading (and especially starting a homesteading journey) actually entails. The work is hard, but the rewards are real. You just have to keep going.
We show the wonders of our gardens and homestead through words and images via this blog and our social media. Beautiful blooms, serene animals on pasture, and perfectly ripened veggies are all what we all want to see and share. But those things are also, in themselves, the reward that comes from the hard work and effort we put into homesteading.
We have to periodically remind ourselves to see those rewards. When we reframe our thinking around the life cycle of the farm we can find joy in abundance all around. The rewards of our hard efforts are all on display, if only we slow down and take the time to see them for what they are. Tiny miracles.
Tiny miracles that we’ve brought into existence with our time and effort.
So take our advice and follow Schweitzer’s lead. Work hard. Be steadfast in your perseverance. See the good.