Stop the world, I want to get off! I've said that more than once...often with a whine to the voice. Life can be very overwhelming. I'm sure you know what I mean. It's not like I have a monopoly on struggles. The Bible even acknowledges this fact as it also tells us not to fret about tomorrow because today has enough troubles of it's own. How very true! If it's not the car, it's the plumbing or an appliance or weeds growing too fast and vegetables not growing at all...and often...it's all of the above all at once! Argh. What is a person to do? Run away?
Don't think I haven't considered it! Dropping off the radar and hiding in a mountain cabin or Nowhereville someplace can seem very appealing when there is more week at the end of a paycheck and everywhere you look there are broken things needing fixin'. While I've not actually tried the "drop off the radar" idea, I have moved more than once trying to run away from problems. That is a habit I learned from my father. He was a Run-a-wayer Extraordinaire. I figured out something he never did: the grass is not greener on the other side of the fence or country. So, running away will not resolve a thing. The only option, therefore, is to stand. When all else fails: stand.
It is best to take that stand with family around you. As Solomon observed: a cord of three strands is not quickly broken. Alone, you will fall. Together, you hold each other up. One gardens. Another cans. Another hunts. One plans and calculates. Another offers wisdom gained from a long life. Another fixes the plumbing. Individually, we would crumble. Together, we are a force to be reckin'ed with!
A couple of decades ago, I started dreaming about a homestead. A place where I could be self-reliant. Actually, it was a place to hide my heart from the world so the world could not hurt me anymore. A place a long...long...way from an unkind society. I read about gardening and permaculture and caring for livestock. I made plans. Thank God, those plans did not take form outside my head! He knew what I did not see, yet; that it would have been a hell of my own making.
When I moved here to live with Mother, I thought it was the end of the dream. I continued to read and dream but I held less hope of it coming into reality. Partly that was because I imagined a homestead had to be 5 acres in some remote location. Despite the apparent death of the dream, that urge for self-reliance I felt in my gut became louder as world events and that Still Small Voice inside turned into a drumbeat in my head "get ready...it's time to get ready...it's coming...get ready".
I never could have dreamt of what we have here on this little half-acre homestead. Never could I have hoped for the family that has formed here. Out of the ashes of pain and disappointment is rising up a Family that is knit together by love and respect rather than blood. We have a family where each individual uses their talents, abilities, and giftings to support the family. We also have friends. In times of challenge, you learn who are truly your friends and who are not. Sure, there are the false friends, the Brutus'. But, keep the faith because you will find the gold being purified in the same fire you are being purified in. Find the true ones and nurture that connection. We'll need all the true friends we can get -- very soon.