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The Story of Us

This farm has been a dream I have carried in my soul in some version and vision for most of my life. Since I was a child, I have been in love with every farm I could get to visit, every animal I got to touch and every time I got to help harvest and shuck corn or play on the tire swing hung from the branch of a majestic old oak tree. I was blessed to be raised in a time and family that allowed me to be what is now been labeled a feral child, a term that describes something that is a rarity when it was simply our normal not that many years ago. The love ran deep, almost as if it was pumping through the very veins in my body. 

I have attempted to piece this dream together many times in my adult life, always ending in failure and heartbreak, to the point that I had almost completely given up on it. Then through a series of events we ended up with this land, this pitiful, unloved, uncared for land. And I was obsessed from the very first visit! There was nothing beautiful here to anyone else, they only saw the work it was going to take, the overgrowth, the junk, the garbage. I didn’t. I knew immediately just how every single thing was meant to lay out and what the end result will one day look like. My soul knew. I was finally here. I was finally home. I had my farm!

God is a huge part of our story. A huge part of my everyday life. I know without an ounce of doubt that he placed this farm in my path, He wants to give us the desires of our heart. He did place them there after all. Then he started with the lessons. The reminder that I am not to get too big for my britches. That I am not to forget that it is because of his love, blessings and grace that I am able to sit here. I needed these lessons. I know that now. But in the midst of it I most certainly did not appreciate the bigger picture. A massive lesson in patience and prayer was coming my way, and it was going to last for a solid year! I might be a bit stubborn. It’s quite possible. But my Abba is patient (and persistent!)

I went from wide eyed and dream filled to sitting on the floor crying out because I had no idea how to make all this happen. I was overwhelmed, undersupported and felt completely alone in what I knew like the air I breathed I was supposed to be doing. I have an amazing family, chaotic and all completely different, but amazing nonetheless. They all love big and will do whatever they can whenever they can. But I am the dreamer, the jump off the deep end and learn to swim so I don’t drown type. I am the visionary, the doer of the big things. And I have a tendency to go far past what anyone else around me even thinks about doing, much less wants to actually do. I’m a worker. It’s where I’m happiest and at the most peace. When I have my hands busy, and usually dirty. 

I knew instantly that this place was going to be a farm, my farm. But I had no idea just what that meant in God’s plan. He’s an even bigger visionary than me! Once I sat down and gave up control He began to show me, in small ways, with single open doors at a time and dimly lit paths where I could only see the next step in front of me. And one by one the pieces started to fit together. I started to see what He saw. And each time I got another piece I felt a little more peace, it was comforting to know that he was always reassuring me I was going the right way, and when I wasn’t He would guide me back. Sometimes gently. Sometimes with a big kick to the pants. . 

This little farm that I wanted to just make beautiful and homestead on to feed my family and fulfill this social media picture I had in my mind became a full scale market farm that was going to feed and nourish my community, not only with food but also spiritually. I was brought here to be the hands and feet of God, to heal and restore more than just a food desert area. 

I remember the day he gave me the farm verse. I was in the garden planting and listening to a YouTube video on my headphones. And as soon as I heard it I knew it was meant for me, that it was telling me exactly what to do. 

“Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”

Eph. 3:20-21 NKJV

It was my job to just do and His job to take what little my hands could build and grow and create and turn it into something far more than even I can imagine. He’s been doing that every single day since. And on the days when I am overwhelmed or scattered or feeling defeated, He always has a way of bringing me back to center. He will send a person or a conversation or even something as small as a song on the radio or post on social media that will give me the direction or the confirmation I’m needing. The number of stories I have of the exact thing showing up at the exact time are immeasurable. 

So here we are, one day at a time, building out this farm that I have longed for since I was a child. Creating a legacy that I will leave my children and grandchildren. Living out a life for the Lord the best way I know how. And even on the hard days, I’m still at peace, because I know that I have a huge and mighty God and He has already worked out everything ahead of me. 

Farming is more than seeds and soil. It’s more than watching the weather forecast and praying for rain, or praying for it to stop raining. 

Farming is about faith. Faith in tomorrow. Faith in others. Faith in ourselves. It’s about doing the work without having any security that the outcome will be what you want. Trusting that if you do your very best, give your all to growing that garden or raising that pig, that in the end you will be rewarded with the most delicious tomato and bacon sandwich you’ve ever eaten. Knowing that if you grow it the community will come. 

Farming is about learning patience. Patience in the process of planting and germination. Patience in the process of growing and producing. Patience in the process of waiting for the next season and crop rotation. Patience for the calf to grow out into a 1200 pound steer. Patience for that baby chick to grow up to produce eggs. 

Farming is about persistence and determination. Persistence when disease starts to hit your crops. Determination when the bugs start to find your gardens. Persistence and determination when something you tried fails and you’ve got to start again. You must love what you're doing enough to not give up when it gets difficult, because it will get difficult!

Farming shows us exactly what God is trying to show us all the time. Faith, patience and love.

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