My husband has a worm farm.
Yep, you read that right. A real, live, honest to goodness, farm for worms. Those little, ugly, wiggly things that live in my garage. John came up with the bright idea one day a couple of summers ago. Actually, I probably am going to, somehow, end up with the credit for this venture.
A friend of mine came in the Post Office to try and get me to go to a gardening class at the college. I do not have the time and am no good with anything that is green. So, I took the information and gave it to my husband. He was out of work at the time and I felt, (notice the I), like he needed something fun to do. He grumbled a little, but gave in when he looked at the brochure and decided it looked interesting.
He took the gardening class at the local college. In this class, the instructor believes in gardening the old fashioned way. No bug sprays, no chemical fertilizers, no roto-tillers. You have to dig the garden and than you have to do everything by hand. It is supposed to make the food both healthier, and safer for your family to eat.
I am not a gardener. As a matter of fact, I can't even grow house plants. I swear I have a totally black thumb. If you give me a plant, it will be amazingly accommodating and die on me. I think I just have to look at the plant to sentence it to a miserably short life. I don't even go near the catnip plant in the library, (the cat won't let me).
So, here is my sweet husband, doing the gardening on his own, and not even doing it the easy way. He actually keeps me out of the garden. Hence the worms. In his class, the teacher is a big believer in these worms. You raise them inside the house by feeding them scraps and wait for them to grow. When they are well established, you move them outside into the garden and let the worms fix whatever is wrong with your soil. They make the soil more productive. They make it easier to plant in and dig in and they help the plants to grow.
So, John went to California and got some worms. I still don't know why he couldn't find them any closer to where we live, but we made a vacation out of it and brought them home in the back of the van with the kids! He brought them into the house and put them in a plastic bin that had been cut and fixed for their needs. (If you don't know what those needs are, you will have to ask John. I do not understand any of it!)
Once he had it all ready, he moved the bin into the garage. Probably because I would not let him keep worms in the living room. Anyway, the worms grew and were getting quite large when he managed to kill them off by feeding them something they did not like. So, he had to start over. This has been a long process.
It has been two growing seasons since we started the worms in the bucket in the garage. He got more worms from someone that also was in the class, and they have been doing whatever worms do in the garage for several months now. I had despaired of ever having a normal family garage again. (You know, the kind with NORMAL junk!)
Finally, the day recently came when they could be moved outside into the garden area. Yeah! The next obsticle came when the local raccoons discovered the worms. Evidently, worms are quite the tasty snack to a raccoon. They have no problem at all with raiding our garden and devouring every worm they can find. This would not do. We have waited two years to move these worms and they are NOT going back in the garage just because a couple of raccoons can't mind their own paws.
Now we have chicken wire over the worms to keep the coons out and the worms are doing well. Of course, they missed the growing season this year, but they are outside, ready to do their business and help my garden for next spring's planting.
However, the really important thing I have learned is that sometimes, we all have to change the way we look at things. When John first brought up the worms, I was not very supportive. I did not want a house full of worms. I could not imagine how they could be good for anything, except fishing. I had to really change the way I looked at the worms and learn to see the potential in them.
We each have within us the ability to see the divine nature of each other. We have the ability, but are we willing? Sometimes, the way a person or a thing is perceived, is not what they are. It is the value you placed on them. Like the worms in my life. It has taken me a long time to see the value that they have to our future gardens and therefore to our family. I wonder what a difference we could make in this life, if we could view and treat others as if they truly are sons and daughters of God. I would like to close with these two thoughts by Gordon B Hinckley. He said:
"I challenge every one of you who can hear me to rise to the divinity within you. Do we really realize what it means to be a child of God, to have within us something of the divine nature?"
"I feel to invite every woman everywhere to rise to the great potential within you. I do not ask that you reach beyond your capacity. I hope you will not nag yourselves with thoughts of failure. I hope you will not try to set goals far beyond your capacity to achieve. I hope you will simply do what you can do in the best way you know. If you do so, you will witness miracles come to pass."
I hope that each of us will desire to rise to the divine nature that is in us. May you always remember that you are truly a child of God.