The Farmer and His Bride

(This is a painting of a religious leader that I hold dear to my heart. Please look at this painting and think of your most loved religious leader. This religious person might be a reverend, woman, pastor, parent etc. This holy person is surrounded by Godís rainbow heart of unending love for his children. This person represents the church as the bride of Jesus. Anyone who loves God and neighbor is a church bride to Jesus. He is also holding a sweet potato that was planted in rich soil. Thank you God for your unending rainbow heart of love.)

One September after noon a farmer asked his bride to help him in the field to dig their sweet potatoes. The couple was pleased with their larger harvest of sweet potatoes. After a few days in storage many of the sweet potatoes began to decay and they had to throw out most of their harvest. They talked about the problem and remember the same thing happen one year when they planted their sweet potatoes far apart and in very rich soil. It was a very sad winter without their most loved sweet potatoes. In the spring the farmer and his bride decided to plant their potatoes in poor soil and twice as many in a roll to make up for any that might rot. As the plants grew the larger plants began to complain of over crowing and refused to let the smaller plants live. Larger plants told the bride "these little ones use to much of their sunlight and get in the way." Larger plants sent out runners to take water and sun light form their smaller and helpless neighbors choking them to death.

    The good bride tried to reason with the sweet potatoes about the farmers plan and to trust in him. She begged the plants to let go and stop choking the smaller ones, but they would not listen. The farmer replied "the soil must still be too rich for these sweet potatoes they have gotten selfish and lazy." You "have not obeyed me nor paid heed: they have stiffened their necks and done worse than their fathers" (Jer 7, 23-28) the farmer said. "If you continue in your selfishness the weeds will take over. The sweet potatoes only got meaner and complained that this garden was not big enough. A sad farmer looked at other farms growing sweet potatoes and saw plants very close together producing good potatoes in very poor soil.

    He was very angry with his crop but he still loved them. A nervous bride could read her husband thoughts and began to pray "please dearest husband remember your rainbow promise and don't send your wrath upon them." "I will beg the sweet potatoes to stop killing their young." All but a few smaller plants served the choking from the larger plants. "She prayed dear God in heaven don't allow theses plants to kill their future." Many potatoes rotted in storage and the couple faced another long winter without their beloved sweet potatoes. In the spring the bride put their few remaining potatoes in water to get sprouts off the larger parent potatoes. Week after week went by without any signs of life. She began to fear that there would be no slips for spring planting. She had to throw out the sterile potatoes and placed her last two in water for sprouting. Her last two potatoes were also sterile and were of no use. The sweet bride became sick with sadness and wonder why their potatoes refused to be happy and multiply. Without sweet potatoes their garden look so empty. Then one day the bride notice a difference type sweet potato growing in the field. She told her husband "they must have migrated from the next farm over." The farmer reply "this potato must be a strong and lean to travel this far without water, this potato is from good stock and will not rot in storage"

Pope John Paul II is holding a sweet potato from God's garden.

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