I have so much to process right now, and I don’t know how to express all that we’ve experienced and been through in the past 4 years. But here’s a snapshot of the past 2 years.
The Lord put a dream in our hearts to start a farm. And 4 years ago, we followed that dream to a place we’d never lived and found ourselves in Virginia. It took two years of living there before we were able to get land. And we decided to live on that land in an RV with the intention of building a house or mobile home on the property. The house would never come. The mobile home would never come.
And it felt like door after door got shut in our faces for it. Every time we stepped out to start the process of buying a home to put on the land, even the cheapest one we could get off the mobile home lot, the door was slammed in our faces. We couldn’t understand why because when we first started the process, it seemed like all those doors were open.
And then the enemy came. And came again and again and again.
I hurt my ankle and it took a long time to heal. My husband hurt his back and it took a few months to heal, and just when we were both coming up for air from that, I stepped on a screw on Easter. And it was a deep wound. It took me two months before I could walk on it again. Then my daughter sprained her knee, and my son got attacked by a neighbor dog. And there were countless financial attacks, where we could never seem to get ahead and we were always struggling with our finances. And we couldn’t breathe.
And in between all that, my husband battled with his mental health, and the toll of all this almost cost us our marriage and so much more.
It almost cost us the most important thing. The most important dream of all.
You see while the dream was a farm, the dream was never about a farm.
It was about family, faith and stepping out into the unknown and trusting the Lord to come through because He is the one who said: “come.” It was about having a place to abide and rest, but we couldn’t get out from under the heaviness, we couldn’t breathe. And so, our marriage was falling apart, I was suffering, the kids were suffering and it seemed like there was no way out.
Well, there was no way unless we were willing to do something hard and painful and humbling. We needed time and space to heal, but there was no way to do that unless we were willing to let it all go and give it back to Him.
The land had become an unbearable burden. It was hard work, and I had to work from home and manage everything at the farm alone. My husband worked so far away that he was gone (in our only vehicle) for 12 hours a day. And when he got home, he wasn’t emotionally available to us. He was too exhausted to do much, and the projects I needed help with had fallen to the wayside. Me and the kids were so isolated and couldn’t do anything extra until he got home. This made it hard to make friends and connect with our community the way that we desired. We spent outrageous amounts on money on fuel and car repairs just so my husband could commute to work each day. Our finances were being decimated by the day, and there was nothing left over. No buffer.
Early in 2021, we went on a trip to get away and dream together again, to get a reprieve from all the heaviness and the Lord showed us that it was going to be time to leave Virginia soon and to get ready. He was leading us out into unknown territory again.
But to do that, I had to be willing to let it go. I remember praying and feeling such a weighty question from the Lord as I asked Him what to do next. He said, “Are you willing to let it all go?” Well, of course, was my answer. But the question nagged at me day in and day out. Was I willing to let it go? Was I willing to walk away from the land with nothing but the people I loved the most? Was I willing to say goodbye to this dream to pursue the greater dream?