Friday, October 02, 2015

A John Deere Tractor, A Wheelrake, My Dad and A Whole Lotta Grace!!

This is Day 2 of 31 in my Write 31 Days series: 31 Stories of God's Grace. I also am linking up for the Five Minute Friday. The FMF is hosted by Kate Motaung on her blog Heading Home. Today's prompt is "Family." Write for five minutes; unedited.

My family has taught me a lot about grace through my life. Our Dad especially has gotten really good at showing grace to my sister and I.

I remember one summer in particular, when Dad had taught me how to drive the tractor and wheel rake and entrusted me with the responsibility of raking one of our fields. One sunny North Dakota afternoon, my sister and I were raking a field. Ann was riding on the tractor with me. At one point, I turned the corner too sharp and totally didn't quite make the corner. The wheel rake was entangled with the fence that marked the boundary for the field. I looked at Ann and Ann looked at me.

For a few minutes, I am pretty sure neither of us showed grace to each other. We argued over why this calamity had happened in the first place. I am pretty sure that I blamed her for being in my line of sight and she probably blamed me for not paying attention to where I was going. After arguing, we jumped down off the tractor and tried to figure out how to get the wheel rake unstuck.

We decided it was a lost cause. We had to admit defeat. Ann and I walked back to find Dad who then came over to find our conundrum. He just shook his head and asked "How in the world did you get the rake that stuck?" As he tried to figure out the best way to untangle the rake from the fence, he was not at all gracious with either of us as he was disappointed in our actions.

But once the rake was unstuck and Dad had a minute to reflect on the situation, he offered us grace; grace that came in his forgiveness to us. I remember that day well. I remember totally turning that corner too sharp and tangling that wheel rake in the fence. I remember my sister and I arguing over what happened. But most of all, I remember that grace that we were offered through forgiveness by Dad and the rest of our family.


It is one of those stories that definitely changed me and did not leave me where it found me. For you will never see me turning a tractor too sharp again...instead I will turn the tractor much wider so I have lots of room to swing that wheel rake around.


47 comments:

  1. Awesome story, Tara. It's amazing how much grace our parents give us when we're not willing to provide grace to each other (especially siblings!). Love your series and your stories of grace!

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    1. Thanks Samantha! It really is amazing how much grace our parents give us.

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  2. Love that you remember your dad's grace. It's far too easy to remember the things we wish our parents had done better. But in that, we need to offer them grace as well!

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    1. Yes so true! Thanks Holly!

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  3. What a memorable story, Tara! And thank goodness God's grace is always there for us, even when it's our fault something happens. Grace is such an important part of family life, isn't it?

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    1. Thanks Jeanne! Grace really is such an important part of family life.

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  4. Loved how you told the story. It's amazing just how much we can learn from our parents actions (good or bad). Helen

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  5. A grace of a real dad mirroring the grace of Our Father...we all make sharp turns and mistakes. Love this concrete example! You can drive a tractor! Wow! Cool! Jenn

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    1. Oh yes, I love that...the grace of my dad mirroring the grace of our Father. Yes, I can drive a tractor.

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  6. Sometimes it's those things we learn from experience isn't it? It's so wonderful to have family that shows grace isn't it?

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    1. I'm parked at 51 today :)

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  7. What a sweet memory, Tara. Learned grace, when we see how it's done by watching the folks around us. I think it's a special variety. Hugs, friend.

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    1. Tiffany, thank you! Hugs back at you friend!

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  8. Beautiful story. Family is where we should learn about grace. Thank you for a lovely example.

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  9. I loved every bit of this story! I am so thankful it doesn't leave us where it found us.

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    1. Thanks Laura! My aunt read my post and said she could picture the entire scene unfolding! :)

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  10. Very sweet story, I love hearing about your farm life!

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  11. What a beautiful vivid memory of your father's Grace; a reminder of our Father's Grace! Thanks for sharing Tara!

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  12. Love this reflection and look into your growing up years and the grace that was a choice --and freely given! (Didn't you love how the Prompt fit right in to your series?)

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    1. Thanks friend! Yes, I loved how the prompt fit right into my series.

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  13. What a great analogy! Sometimes I have trouble wrapping my head around Grace.

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    1. Thanks Melissa! I am glad my story can help wrap your brain around grace.

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  14. I love this and I love the word picture of you on a tractor! Totally doesn't fit my mental picture of you at all :).

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    1. Ha! I love that it totally doesn't fit your mental picture of me. But I indeed did grow up on a farm. We lived in town, but my dad helps on our family farm with my grandpa, uncle, etc.

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  15. Wonderful story, Tara. Sharing memories and lessons learned is a blessing to others. Thank you for sharing yours.

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  16. You need to weave the analogy into a sermon....oh yes you do. xo

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    1. :) Someday I have a feeling this story might indeed make its way into a sermon analogy. xo

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  17. I liked your story, Tara, and love how you point out that grace changes us and doesn't leave us where it found us. Hope you have a great weekend.

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    1. Carly, thank you! I am so thankful that grace changes us and doesn't leave us where it found us. Hope you had a great weekend! I did!

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  18. Good old tractor days! Growing up in a farming community with farming grandparents and friends we have quite a few stories of John Deere run ins and grandma and grandpa granting some grace! Thanks for such a great story!

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    1. Rachel, fun that you have some great stories of John Deere run ins too.

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  19. Great story, Tara! I think it's so true - grace and forgiveness do not mean there's not frustration first. ;) Your dad sounds like an amazing teacher. ~Annie

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    1. Thanks Annie! My dad has been a great teacher!

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  20. I love that God designed the world with fathers in it : ) I like your theme for the 31 challenge. Visiting from FMF today. Enjoy your weekend.

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    1. Joyce, me too! Thanks for visiting from FMF. I enjoyed my weekend. Hope you did too!

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  21. I love how your dad taught you grace through your growing up experiences. They are wonderful like that. Hope your weekend is wonderful.

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    1. Mary, thank you! My weekend was wonderful. Hope you had a great weekend too!

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  22. Arguments between sisters....oh yes, I can certainly relate! My sis is three years younger than I.
    Lynette

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    1. Lynette, my sister is three years younger than me too. Sounds to me like you can totally relate too!

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