Monday, December 29, 2008

Farmer's Boys

Two young boys are born on separate farms, to separate fathers. From the day he turned five, the first boy’s father would wake him at 5:00AM and take the boy with him to begin the daily chores around the farm. As he grew, the boy would learn to do everything from milk the cows, to tend to the crops. Between school and his responsibilities on the farm, the boy went to bed exhausted every night. Many of the town people said the father worked the boy too hard and was not allowing him to be a child.
On the other side of town, the second boy had a different lifestyle. His father swore never to make his child work the long, hard hours, he had as a boy. His father would wake every morning, see his son sleeping and smile as he left him to rest. He would work in the fields and tend to the farm all day, while his son played and went to school. The father was happy and felt pride in the life he was giving his son.
As fate would have it, on the boys' eighteenth birthday, their fathers both died

The first boy was devastated. He mourned the death of the man who had taught him everything he knew. He continued to tend to the farm and thought of his father everyday while doing so. His life, although never to be the same, continued on.
The second boy was overwhelmed with life. His father who had done so much for him, was gone. The farm would surely fall into ruin, since he had no idea how to take care of it. After a few weeks, he fell into a state of depression. Although he wanted to honor his father by keeping the farm, he was forced to sell it. How could he face the world alone?

Our children need us to help them learn, not to do everything for them. If you knew you wouldn’t be here for them on their eighteenth birthday, what would you do differently?

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