Monday, March 21, 2005

Uniting Work and Home

One of the characteristics of our modern industrial culture is the separation of work and home. I think this has caused some real problems. As Wendell Berry points out, people used to work where they lived. Farmers lived on their farms, shopkeepers lived above the store and so on. What you did during the day was there for you to see when you went to bed. More importantly your family saw what you did and held you responsible. Today we lack the accountability. Most people "go to work" and can act immorally and choose not to tell anyone after they "escape" to their homes. Our homes have become a building full of escapes. We can sit in the recliner chair turn on the boob tube and forget about our secret lives. This is one reason why I think we need to have home based family businesses. Folks who have a multi-generational vision and have there own businesses can break this cycle. Here is an example. A family farm has a woodlot. They carefully manage it, selectively harvesting trees while being careful not to ruin the smaller trees that will be growing for future children. They care because they plan on the great grandkids farming there and using the woodlot for supplemental income. The same woodlot could be purchased by a city boy with a timber company. He may choose to clear cut the woods. He dose not live there, so he never has to see the mess. He wants instant profit and is not looking ahead as far as we would. I also think the way we conduct business would be different if our wives and children were part of the business. What we may be willing to do to turn a quick buck, just might need our 10 year old kid pointing out the fact we could be breaking one of God's laws. We all have had our kids point out the obvious to us before. It may be embarrassing but sometimes we need to see things as little babes don't we! If we manage our assets for the next generation in a God honoring way, we could build wonderful communities.

5 Comments:

At 3/22/2005 6:27 PM, Blogger trawlerman said...

Even though at the present my work site is four miles from our apartment, separate from our home, someday, as a librarian, our family may have its own living quarters in a library.

City Libraries Team Leader John Stears says Brooklyn Library was the first and only branch to have living quarters for its librarian. "The first Brooklyn Library building located at 22 Harrison Street was specially designed to house the library collection, as well as a living area with a bedroom, scullery and bathroom for the resident librarian.

Then, again, I've been seriously considering taking a position in a correctional facility library. There's an instance in which I'd prefer not to live on-site.

 
At 3/23/2005 7:33 AM, Blogger Rebecca said...

Scott, before Corynn was born, Matt and I took our last "vacation" together and went to Colonial Williamsburg, where we toured a certain prison. This particular prison, the only one in the area (naturally) housed the "warden" and his family. The warden's wife would cook meals for all the inmates and put them through a wooden slot big enough only for a plate. I would think living in a prison, while not having done anything wrong would be a sort of doomsday fate. To say the least, it would give me the heebie-jeebie's. I would hate to be that man's wife!

 
At 3/23/2005 7:57 PM, Blogger abigail said...

To: Mister Scott Terry, Farmer Man

I duly searched for something to misinterpret and to which I could neverendingly respond, but I admit defeat.

Thanks for the thoughtful post!

From: The Wife of the Prison Librarian, Writing Behind Bars

 
At 3/23/2005 7:58 PM, Blogger abigail said...

To: Mister Scott Terry, Farmer Man

I duly searched for something to misinterpret and to which I could neverendingly respond, but I admit defeat.

Thanks for the thoughtful post!

From: The Wife of the Prison Librarian, Writing Behind Bars

 
At 3/25/2005 3:04 PM, Blogger reformed farmer said...

Hey John

That would be cool, living in a library. All them books at your disposal any time of the day or night.

Are you sure you want to work in a prison?

Scott

 

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