Ask any gardener or farmer how to grow a garden, and you’ll get a different answer from each one. I’m in the middle of my Alaska Master Gardener course, and I’m loving it. I’m learning a lot, but through it all, I really want to know how to do one thing. I want to know about Gardening God’s Way.
Years ago, long before I knew I’d be striving towards the “homestead life,” I heard Brother Kenneth Copeland say something. It was during one of the many droughts going through the Texas/ Oklahoma area. He said that God had told him that everything farmers needed to know to successfully farm the land was in the Bible. But Brother Copeland said he wasn’t called to preach on it, so he didn’t. Even though I didn’t have a garden at the time or for many years to come, that one thought stuck with me. I wanted to know what the Bible said about farming; what were they doing wrong?
A couple years after that, I was reading something (I don’t really remember what), but it said that the Dust Bowl in the 1930’s was completely manmade and could have been avoided, but it didn’t really say how.
For some reason, those two tidbits of information stuck together in my brain and I’ve never been able to forget them. What was in the Bible for farmers? How could the Dust Bowl have been avoided?
Honestly, the part about what was in the Bible stuck with me more. I tried studying it out on my own, but never got very far. The Bible doesn’t really get into detail about the every day chores of gardening. Obviously it talks about a garden in Genesis with the garden of Eden. God didn’t exactly lay out a companion planting list for me there. I knew in the Book of Matthew, Jesus talked in the parable about sowing in good soil. (Matthew 13:1-23) I already knew I needed good soil to plant. What was I missing?
Last year I found a book, Born Again Dirt by Noah Sanders. I read through it, soaking it all in. This was what I had been looking for! Noah uses scripture throughout his book, calling Christians back to the way God created us, to be good stewards of His earth, His garden.
I’ve read it twice in the last six months. As Noah says, “The primary message of this book is that the transforming work of the Gospel in the hearts of farmers should also transform our agriculture. If we want to glorify God we must be Christian farmers, not just farmers who are Christians. The way we work the dirt must spring from a Biblical worldview. This is the concept of ‘born-again dirt’.”
This book is for people getting into farming and for those who already farm, more so than for the everyday, backyard gardener. But I truly believe that this book is and can be a huge blessing to those with just a small garden in the backyard too.
Whether you’re a small time gardener, run a huge farm, or are a homesteader looking to provide for your family, I highly recommend Born Again Dirt. Take a step back and see God’s hand in all you do, in growing your garden, tending your chickens or other animals, and giving Him all the glory for all He has done and wants to do in your life and your garden.
And don’t forget to buy your own copy!