Refreshing the Dream

Refreshing the Dream

You may have noticed the logo for Spirit Dog Farm has a new look that we feel is a better reflection of who we are and of our priorities. There’s a reason for that.  Sometimes you have to take a few steps back, reassess your options, and reboot in order to refresh and revive your dreams.

Many things have changed in the eleven years since Butch and I bought our place and established Spirit Dog Farm. Two of our kids have grown and gone on to their own lives.  The third is fast approaching the day when she, too, will leave our nest, leaving only Butch and me to carry on.

To add to the changes, Butch was forced into early retirement a few years after we bought the place for medical reasons. His condition has caused his physical strength and stamina to decline significantly over the last couple years.

About five years ago, I took a “temporary” position at a local law office that was supposed to last about six weeks.  I’m forever grateful it lasted much longer than that (I’m still there), but between it and Butch’s health, we had to stop growing our market crops and give up our flock of chickens we kept for eggs. I wasn’t home enough to take care of gardens that size and his health prevents him from doing so. As the hens began to die off, we simply decided not to replace them in order to reduce the burden on him for their daily care.

All of this is about to change yet again.

The attorney I’m working for is retiring as of July 1 of this year and on that same date, hopefully, I should begin my appointment in pastoral ministry. While I’m excited about my pending appointment, I am (happy for my employer, but) saddened to lose the position I have here at the law office. My employer has gone above and beyond to support me in my studies and preparation for ministry and, I’m sure, would be just as supportive once I was appointed. While I’m actively looking for a replacement job, I have some trepidation that the majority of employers out there will be as generous about time off for “church things”.

I’m also still trying to reconcile what will be my “two” jobs. The private sector job will be the primary income replacement for my current job, and most people would say, “then that’s your main job,” but, as someone who has answered a call into God’s service, appointment to a church will always be (for me) “Job One”. Further and although the appointments I’m likely to receive will be part-pay, I’m having a difficult time seeing any pastoral position as anything but full-time.

Needless to say, this has created a conundrum as I search for replacement positions, so Butch and I have been discussing the possibility of bringing Spirit Dog Farm back into production and of my possibly supplementing that income with a remote position as a virtual assistant.

The good news is we still have our Spirit Dogs (our horses) who are still more than adequately producing our … main soil supplement (grin), so our farm-fresh produce will continue to be naturally grown according to the organic standards required for certification. And, after we’ve been able to build a new and easier to maintain coop and more predator safe coop and enclosure for them, we will once again be supplying farm-fresh eggs.

Rethinking, reassessing, and rebooting are things we all need to do from time to time as we move through the seasons of our lives.  I have a good feeling about this, and I know that I am not going to be alone. My life verse continues to hold true:

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. – Romans 8:28