At a very young age, we started working in the family paddy field. We grow rice to meet our essential need for food grains. It was not meant for commercial purpose.
For starters, rice is grown in a water-retentive soil, with a reliable source of water for irrigation, and a way to drain the water when it is time for harvesting. Growing rice is the main source of food grains in the region.
From dawn to dusk, we spend our time preparing the field suited for planting rice. I felt blessed to have learned, lived, and experienced the art of farming in the field. It takes a lot of hard work to garner a good harvest at the end of the season.
First, it was making the cultivation bed or terrace ready, which needed hard work the most. We used self-made Langkawn in ploughing the land. Since we do not use machine, the work need to be done physically. The process took huge toil on our physical as well as our mental strength. Looking back at those time, it easily fits into our story time with my children.
In the muddy soil, we started our work very early in the morning. Every stroke of our ‘wooden-handle spade’ made us nearer to the most awaited lunch time. With no more energy left, I remember lying down in a pool of muddy water many times during the period. However, I needed to get up again so that I can have a hearty meal and take rest in the shades.
We were filled with mud and dirty water. However, when we washed in the clean water we become as fresh as new. Let me tell you something here that it always reminded me of the cleaning of sin by the blood of Jesus Christ. For it is written:
Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool.1
There is something to do in my part; I have to get up from that mud-filled soil with the tired body. So that I may get rest, very much-needed for my well-being.
The hope of getting rest for a while in the noontime keeps us going, although the hope of getting a good harvest seems like a distant dream, for now. However, if there is no natural calamity for that particular year, a good harvest is assured at the end of the season.
Now, with the preparation of the cultivation and planting being done, it looks like a very promising return will be garnered at the end of the season. Even the sight of it provided attractive scenery, with its clean and lustrous green look.
Let me conclude herewith what has been offered to us with open arms.
“Come to Me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”2
1 Isaiah 1:18b, 2 Matthew 11:28