Heathemoor Farm had come about in a very supernatural way. We had started desiring a larger farm than our cozy five acres in the middle of someone else’s two hundred acres. The desire increased continually. We had no money to buy a bigger farm, but I remembered a verse my seventh grade Bible teacher had taught us:
Delight thyself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.
“If God is first in your life,” she had said, “He will give you the desire itself as well as the object.” John and I asked God to take away this desire if it was not from Him. If He had truly put this longing in our hearts, He would have to bring it about.
True to His word, He did not remove the desire and He worked it out with no money from us. We had also asked for a story that would be so unique that the telling of it would prove to people that the God of the Bible was still doing the same things today as He did in the Bible days. That is how we got this beautiful farm, but that’s a different story.
In the midst of these happy times there was ever a great burden hovering over our shoulders. The Heavenly Father was testing us, instructing us, stretching us. It was not His intent to save us from problems, but to teach us to trust in the midst of them, to trust Him to bring us through them. We had much to learn, not only about the horse business and the business of trusting God, but also about ourselves. We had been led into the horse business by some remarkable sign posts, but now we owned some fine young colts we could not sell. Untrained colts were not in demand in our part of the country; in fact, finished show horses themselves were not worth much here. The center of the horse business was around Lexington, Kentucky, and we were far from there and had no name that drew people from other parts of the country. How could we sell them? How could we train them?
It seemed we had come to a vast, dry desert. The miracles had stopped. Our story had never reached a climax. It appeared that the Heavenly Father had led us to a dead end, no one would be inspired. And, that was not all; I knew nothing about our finances at that time. Then, one evening I learned that all of our earthly assets were gone. John’s monthly salary was all that stood between us and disaster. I was devastated. That night I could not sleep. I got out of bed, put on my robe, and went for a walk. I walked out into the wide plain of the front pasture, where there were no trees or buildings to detract from the vastness of the sky. I sat down in the damp sweet grass and looked at the unfathomable black dome above me which twinkled with a million stars.
I got a small glimpse of the hugeness of the universe and the relative insignificance of man. In the past, such glimpses used to give me a sense of loneliness, of a lostness in this vast sea. Yet strangely there had never been that feeling of loneliness since we had moved to the country. Rather, there was a definite sense of a friendly Presence that permeated the entire atmosphere.
As I gazed up at the starry heavens, I thought of Abraham in the Bible. God called him out also to wonder at such a sky. He, too, was facing a broad desert for he was an old man and God had told him to try to count those uncountable stars. He told him that even though he had not a single child then, he would have as many descendants as there were stars in the sky. It seemed to me the same God that spoke to Abraham so long ago spoke to me that night. “Look all around you,” He seemed to say. “Are you not living in a miracle? Is not all this faith made sight?” I looked at the expanse of pastures stretching all around me, the dark forms of the mares grazing, the beautiful house in the distance, silvery white and silent against the dark background of the trees and the starry brilliance of the sky. Not one of us could have dreamed only a few years before that all this could ever be ours, that I should be mistress of this farm and these fine horses. It had come about in ways so out of the ordinary. It was a miracle! I was standing in the middle of a miracle! “If I could bring this to pass, if I could turn that shadowy dream into this substance, can’t you trust me to finish the story?” the voice seemed to say. I remembered the Biblical definition of faith in Hebrews 11:1, “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Faith was believing when you could not see.
The next step seemed clear to me that night. I had to wrench my grip away from all earthly security and with the arms of faith grab on literally for dear life to the promises of God. Although my only other choice was despair, it took a violent effort to make the switch, to reach out into the darkness and take hold of God, but the evidence of Him being there was all around me. From that point on I was almost afraid to have anything earthly to cling to, for fear I would have to make that leap again.
Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. It is the vehicle necessary to bring the promises of God into this natural creation. Without faith we cannot please God. By faith Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness. I pray the same for me.