Updated: Aug 16, 2019
Today marks one year since we moved to the farm. It was time for a new adventure, which we were no strangers to, given the way we've moved around the country. Leading up to our closing day, we would jump in the truck and drive down that gravel road to catch a glimpse of what our new life would be like on the farm. This adventure was different, though. This was the first time we were moving because our dream was coming true. His dream of owning acreage. My dream of owning a real farmhouse. Our dream of teaching our kids the value of a hard days' work. Little did we know we'd be learning some lessons of our own along the way.
Patience. We have big plans for the farm. We have projects to do outside and projects to do inside. We have a barn that's in desperate need of repair and plans to plant an apple orchard. It's so easy to imagine the farm buzzing with people. Vendors filling every corner of the barn, selling their vintage wares to DIY-ers by the truckload. Food trucks parked around the perimeter of the yard that smell like the county fair you went to every summer as a kid. The rickety old wagon hitched to the back of the Farmall tractor is loaded with kids, excited to pick apples and pet the animals. The band is set up in the pavilion by the chicken coop, strumming the steel guitar and belting out old folk tunes. Lawn chairs are parked in the horse shoe to watch a movie on the side of the barn on a hot Friday night. It all sounds so dreamy. But guess what? All these things take time and money. More than we have of both. So we make incremental progress, and we practice our patience along the way. Which leads to our next lesson.
Contentment. Did I mention we have dreams to restore our farmhouse to it's 1940's charm? Think original hardwood floors, schoolhouse light fixtures, penny tile, butler's pantry cabinets, wainscoting, clawfoot tubs... In a world with social media, it's so easy to get wrapped up in the comparison trap. To wish that my house looked like hers or that I had more money to renovate every room in my house. But here's the thing. I've never been more content than I am right now. We're not waiting for the next thing to come along because this is the thing we've been waiting for. And while we dream bigger than we could ever ask or imagine, we thank God for His provision.
It's not about the farm. Psalm 89:11 says The heavens are yours, and yours also the earth; you founded the world and all that is in it. All of our earthly possessions belong to God, including this farm. He's entrusted us to manage it for a time, and it's our responsibility to manage it well. He's also gifted us with passions and talents, and I believe we were meant to use those gifts to honor Him. As we continue to lean in and ask for His direction for this farm, He's showing us that it's not about the farm at all. We're discovering who He created us to be. What our passions are, and how our strengths and areas of weakness compliment each other so perfectly. It's been a really beautiful gift.
Sure, there are plenty of practical skills that we've picked up over the past year. Our big kids learned how to drive a 4-wheeler, we learned how to trim the hooves on our goats, we planted our first real garden, and in just a few days, our Mother Hen will be hatching a clutch of eggs. But our greatest take away has been the growth we've experienced individually and as a family. This year has flown by faster than any of us expected, and I wouldn't trade one bit of it.