A Lesson in Patience







Say “Ossabaw” around anyone here at Polyface and we involuntarily twitch. This breed of pig just doesn’t seem to understand our system…  The characteristic razor-back hair on these pigs is a sure sign of trouble… Kind of like a moody teenager with a mohawk (no offence), these pigs just don’t always cooperate.


PhotoWhile this photo is nice, shows the animals living together happily, and is aesthetically pleasing, there is something wrong… Our pigs are not supposed to hang out with our egg-mobile chickens…   You guessed it. They were escapees. Their fellow piggies were perfectly happy in their paddock, but these guys just wanted… more… ?

There we were, happily gathering eggs for the evening when, looking up, we see these fellows meandering nonchalantly up the hill to our location.

While this pair was pretty easy to reinstate in their proper location, I have spent hours working with cantankerous walking bacon sides attempting to (and ultimately succeeding in) transferring them from one paddock to another – FOR THEIR OWN GOOD! …They seem so ungrateful, so blase, so apathetic…

Once, after one of these…sessions… and after the frustration lessened and my blood pressure resumed its normalcy, I thought about what happened. I, the caretaker, tried to do something for the good of my charge. I was trying to move them to fresh grass where they would have plenty to eat and fresh room for rooting…. I was trying take care of them, and they were so ungrateful as to do their utmost to thwart my plans for their lives.

I don’t mean to become “preachy”, but think about it… How often do we Christians fight the things God has planned for our good? Because we don’t understand His plan, or always see His mighty hand in our lives, we often fight the things that he has planned for our ultimate good.

We have a loving Heavenly Father who has promised to take care of us. He has promised to lead us and not let us stumble. He tells us to do things that are for our own good – and we forget or don’t have time… Yet He is patient.

He patiently waits for us to run back into His open arms as His beloved children. We should all take this as a lesson in patience. When we get impatient or irritated at someone or something, remember how often you linger in running to the One who patiently waits for you.



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About Hannah Hale

Hannah hails from McComb, Mississippi, where she farmed with her parents and three sisters. Home-schooled all her life, she grew up helping her grandfather on his Black Angus farm and working with her family to raise dairy goats, laying hens, and bees. Her love for animals blossomed through her involvement in 4-H and cattle showing. Hannah discovered Polyface through a lecture by Joel, and while reading his book You Can Farm, she realized that her life-long dream of farming could become a reality. The summer of 2013 saw Hannah a Polyface intern, and she was subsequently chosen to become an apprentice. Now married, Hannah helps her husband as they work as Polyface rental-farm managers. She is thrilled to have the opportunity to be part of the Polyface team and learn from the best. In the future, Hannah wants to farm full-time and keep Jesus central in her life.

6 Responses to A Lesson in Patience

  1. Yay Hannah! Great word, “neighbor.” 😉

  2. Corin says:

    Funny how our behaviour can so easily be compared to animals’ – pigs, sheep, and whatnot. We would probably find it insulting, except it’s so obviously true that we just have to laugh instead. Hopefully God has a bit of a sense of humour about it as well 🙂 But when I’m finally able to keep a pig or two, I might be steering clear of Ossabaws.

  3. Jessica T says:

    What a great reminder, thank you Hannah. 🙂

  4. Paige says:

    Great post! You’re not preachy at all. 🙂 I’m sure the Lord has thought me as “pig-headed” (haha!) as a cantankerous pig on many occasions throughout my life, but He is faithful.

  5. Lovely, just absolutely lovely. Well written essay lovely message. Thank you.

  6. Joel Horst says:

    “How often do we Christians fight the things God has planned for our good? Because we don’t understand His plan, or always see His mighty hand in our lives, we often fight the things that he has planned for our ultimate good.” That’s a good reminder of something He has been teaching me as well.