Good morning! Thank you for taking time out of your day to read this. I appreciate that, and hope that maybe you are encouraged, or perhaps challenged to think in a different way, if nothing else I hope that you will at least ponder what I am saying…especially in this particular post. So, when I started this blog I intended it to be a farm blog where I would keep those who chose to read it updated about all the happenings on my farm. I thought that perhaps my customers would come here to keep track of what was going on, and when I was selling what etc. But, I was not, and have not been faithful about posting on a regular basis so there has not been much to follow. Over the past seven or eight months however there has been a lot of change in my life. Last year I got to experience the stress of trying to work four part-time jobs while still plugging through high school…not a good idea, it was way too stressful and exhausting. So, I decided that I would try my best to not quadruple book myself and focus on one or two things at a time instead. I made the decision to put any farming asperations on hold for a while and work to save up a good amount of money before I revisit that idea, mostly because to do the style of farming that I have in mind it is a full time job from the start if you want to do it correctly, but also because there was so much friction built up in the family due to my animals that relationships with my family were not thriving like they should have been. So yes, I do still have some laying hens and the horse and donkeys but none of the other animals are here on the farm, and I have no immediate plans of bringing any onto the farm either. Speaking of relationships, I made a post last year about being a free-from sin child of God, in it I talked about what that meant and shared that when I was around seven years old I said the sinners prayer to ask Jesus into my heart. Well, I have a fabulous story to share with you and I hope you read it to the end. What I said in that post about my saying the sinner’s prayer is true, when I was seven I did say it and I got baptized that year. But what I have since been convicted of is that I did it because my older sister did it, I wanted to be baptized, and I wanted to participate in communion at church, I wanted to celebrate my accepting Jesus. But, I didn’t have a heart change, yes, I understood that we are all sinners and that Jesus died on the cross to save us from our sins but I didn’t believe and claim that for myself personally. I just knew what the bible said about the gospel, and because of my upbringing I could talk theology and biblical doctrine but I didn’t have the personal relationship that makes those things come alive, I guess you could say that I was a very fired up religious girl with a fair amount of head knowledge but no actual understanding. Around the time that I was fifteen I became very scared that I had blasphemed against the Holy Ghost (the Spirit of God), because of a thought that came across my mind. That was, as far as I remember, the beginning of my struggling with my faith in God. I became plagued with anxiety and depression, I remember some nights being extremely scared of death and hell that I was literally shaking, probably the epitome of quaking with fear. I would try and read the book of Psalms by my parents’ recommendation, but I couldn’t find true consolation for my soul in doing that. All I could think about was that thought that I believed was blasphemy against the Holy Ghost and that I was going to go to hell. I remember reading some verses in Romans that talks about believing in Jesus with your whole heart, and I now know that I was being convicted of my unbelief because of the unnerving feeling that I got, but when I discussed these sorts of feelings with my mom she reminded me of the time when I was seven and had said that sinner’s prayer and been baptized. I believed and trusted my mom more than what I was being convicted of. So, for years I struggled with this dreadful fear and anxiety, I tried hard to conceal it and keep it from other people because I was embarrassed about it, I didn’t want people to know that I was struggling. I was a lovely broken record that (I felt) couldn’t be fixed. When I was seventeen I thought I had a conversion moment because I acknowledged God in an area of my life, and yes, for a while a lot of my anxiety and depression went away but it didn’t last and I started to feel a void inside of myself again. I wanted very much to serve God and live for Him but the relationship just wasn’t there. I think that is one reason that I kept over booking myself, I needed something to find my identity in, and I didn’t know how to handle the stress of all that so I worked on a farm and then at a quilt store. I thought I was serving God but it was all about me. I became moody, irritable and very discontented with my life and relationships. Last year it came so something of a climax, I wasn’t depressed and anxious all the time but I wasn’t joyful either. Like I said above I started working four part-time jobs over the summer, first was my job at the quilt store which I really enjoyed and then I started on the farming venture, around the end of spring beginning of summer I picked up selling wild rice for a company at a local farmer’s market and in August, selling apples at two markets for a local orchard. During my time at the markets I was able to interact with two believers in Jesus Christ who struck a chord in me deeply. They both were so genuine in their faith and relationship with God that it greatly bothered me that I didn’t have the same. So I again wrestled and struggled with my doubts and the void inside of me. I November I decided that enough was enough, I was reading a great book called Preparing to be a Helpmeet by Debbie Pearl, in it she had a chapter about knowing God and gave a bunch of bible verses that you could go through to see if you truly know God or not. So, I asked God to show me wether or not I actually knew Him and if not, to show me how I could know Him because I wanted to. So, I went through the verses that she recommended and was convicted of my unbelief, I again started thinking that I had blasphemed against the Holy Ghost (which was false) but then I started being exposed to the gospel more and more, and finally after much struggling again with anxiety and depression I decided on the evening of December 2nd after a Christmas party at work that I was just fed up with all of the doubt and turmoil, I needed to be able to function and to live and this wasn’t working. So, I made up my mind that I would just believe, I decided that I don’t care, whatever I thought before, whatever I struggled with I am gonna believe the Jesus Christ is the Son of God. So, I claimed John 3:16 which says “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Did that take away all of problems? No, I still really struggled throughout the month of December, but for some reason (the Holy Spirit) I knew that I was saved and not going to hell. I tell you what, after that decision I have become a new person, I am able to understand the bible when I read it, and receive comfort for my soul when I am distressed. I have a GENUINE relationship with Jesus! I am no longer afraid of death, I but if I do become afraid I am able to remember that Jesus paid the price for me so that I am now no longer going to hell, I am pure white in the eyes of my Father (God), I can talk to Him and know that He hears my prayer and will respond to me, which He does!! Oh, this my people is a truly fabulous…no, wonderful thing. There is more to my life’s story and I could go more in depth to when Jesus was showing me all sorts of things in December before I decided to give up my anxiety, and after that too. But, for now, please, oh very much please look at all this and then look at your own life. Does it feel horrible, and positively hopeless? Are you full of anxiety and depression? It doesn’t matter the subject over which you are struggling, mine was theological because I was raised in a home where the word of God was and is taught. If you have a void that you can’t explain, if you are just a plain old human being with a pulse, please consider asking God to show you how to know Him. And let me tell you, yes, it is as simple as just believing that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, y’all He died a horrible death so that we, ALL of us could be rid of our naughtiness (sin) and go to heaven! Want to know more about Jesus? Ask Him to help you, read the bible which is His wonderful word, talk to a believer in Jesus. folks, this stuff is legit. I know I pretty much wrote a book, but I needed to share this.