The Month of August brings with it the gift of Harvest. In Celtic times, this season of Lunasa was an occasion of thanksgiving.
The Celtic people burnt huge fires, danced and celebrated many rituals, as they thanked God, for the food and sustenance that nourished them as they faced the darker and more vulnerable months of the year. Harvest time is indeed a time of rich blessing, a time to gather all that has been planted and cared for since the early spring.
There can be no harvest without all the necessary tilling, planting, pruning, weeding and nourishing that accompany any fruit that ripens into something good and nourishing.
Perhaps this harvest time is an opportunity for us all, to acknowledge the fruits that we all have in the depth of our being. Fruits that take a lot of time to grow and mature into the beautiful personality and unique qualities that are particular to all our stories.
The gift of Grand-parents who embody the story of every harvest. Parents who respond so generously to the needs of their children.
Parenting I’m sure in many ways could be likened to tending the needs of the vineyard, it is constant, demanding, most challenging and in many ways totally dependent on the unconditional generosity and reservoir of love, that provides for the needs of family life.
I am often truly inspired by the time and indeed sacrifices that so many wonderful parents, so often make for their children, in order to allow them to grow and realize the best possible harvest for their family.
No fruit or talent can realize it is potential without effort and work.
The following story is a simple but gentle reminder that we all have an important role to play in life
“A mouse looked through the crack in the wall to see the farmer and his wife open a package. What food might this contain? The mouse wondered – he was devastated to discover it was a mousetrap. Retreating to the farmyard, the mouse proclaimed the warning: There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!
The chicken clucked and scratched, raised her head and said, “Mr. Mouse, I can tell this is a grave concern to you, but it is of no consequence to me.”” I cannot be bothered by it.”
The mouse turned to the pig and told him, “There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!” The pig sympathized, but said, I am so very sorry, Mr. Mouse, but there is nothing I can do about it but pray.
“Be assured you are in my prayers.”
The mouse turned to the cow and said “There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!”
The cow said, “Wow, Mr. Mouse. I’m sorry for you, but it’s no skin off my nose.”
So, the mouse returned to the house, head down and dejected, to face the farmer’s mousetrap alone.
That very night a sound was heard throughout the house — like the sound of a mousetrap catching its prey. The farmer’s wife rushed to see what was caught.
In the darkness, she did not see it was a venomous snake whose tail the trap had caught. The snake bit the farmer’s wife.
The farmer rushed her to the hospital, and she returned home with a fever. Everyone knows you treat a fever with fresh chicken soup, so the farmer took his hatchet to the farmyard for the soup’s main ingredient.
But his wife’s sickness continued, so friends and neighbors came to sit with her around the clock. To feed them, the farmer butchered the pig.
The farmer’s wife did not get well; she died. So many people came for her funeral, the farmer had the cow slaughtered to provide enough meat for all of them.
The mouse looked upon it all from his crack in the wall with great sadness.
So, the next time you hear someone is facing a problem and think it doesn’t concern you, remember the mouse in the house.”
Fr Paddy Byrne
SEE ALSO – Fr Paddy: From God… to all his children