Nine years ago we were embarking on a new adventure. Our eyes were full of faith as to what God had in store for us. My Mom had just entered eternity. Tom had just retired from owning a business and the options for us seemed endless. God was moving and we were excited. He made it clear He had a place for us in the mountains of NC. We were so excited to see what God had in store.
“For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven…” – Ecclesiastes 3:1 ESV
This week we will embark on a new adventure. We are selling Barefoot Cabin because God has let us know it is time. He let us know in the same way He told us it was time to to buy. Did we see it coming? Not really. But when we heard His direction there was no doubt. His timing is perfect.
We have been busy making the necessary repairs and cleaning. Tomorrow the photographer will come and attempt to capture on film what this place has to offer. But…
It won’t capture the moments our grandchildren played in the snow for the first time. It won’t capture our first apple harvest supplying the best NC native apples for pie. It won’t capture the 4th of July parades, the birthday parties, the fireworks on our hill or the kickball challenges. It won’t share the many ladies retreats where dozens of women met one-on-one with God. It won’t tell of the times women cried in the presence of their Savior. It won’t tell of the Marriage Retreat where like-minded marriage bloggers, our Core Team, came to share their vision for what God was calling us all to do with our newly formed Christian Marriage Bloggers Association.
Missing will be the family gatherings, the “Land Cruises” with dear friends, Tom’s Dad’s 90th birthday celebration, the conversation with a dying friend assuring her of her salvation and watching God release her with peace into His everlasting arms. And the height of it all? Our youngest daughter getting engaged during the hometown 4th of July Parade down Banner Elk’s Main Street.
The laughter, the tears, the joy shared under the roof of this cabin won’t be listed on the MLS page.
No, all these memories are ours to pack up and take with us. You see a place is only the frame for the life lived inside.
We have lived and glorified God in this place. We have shared with others what God has so richly given to us. This place is not ours, but His! We called it Barefoot Cabin because we brought nothing to this cabin but ourselves. God is the only One who has filled it with lasting fruit.
I have hosted 17 Barefoot Ladies retreats. Over 100 women have met their Savior for a week, listening to what He would say to them. Most times they expected reprimands, but came away hearing only how much they were loved and accepted because of Christ. Ah! That alone is enough fruit to feast on for the rest of my life.
As I sit here at the table late on the eve of listing this cabin for sale, the only take away is gratefulness. God has been so very good to us. It is time for this place to bless another family. It is time for us to venture on to the next place of ministry for His glory. And it may be time for a good cry, if I’m gut level honest.
The winds are shifting and God is on the move. We must follow where His Holy Spirit leads us knowing that He does more than we could ask or think.
I’m reminded of this song from Mary Poppins…
“Winds in the east, there’s a mist comin’ in
Like something’ is brewin’ and ‘bout to begin.
Can’t put me finger on what lies in store,
But I feel what’s to happen all happened before.”
The walls echo with music sung in praise to God for who He is and what He has done. I closed every retreat with this song by Matt Redman, and it’s fitting for me to end this post in the same way. Stay tuned for what’s to come.