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Reaching the End of a Rope

I'm at the end of my rope, hoping God will tie a knot there for me. Wondering what's taking so long, feeling as though he left me here, dangling at the end.

I'm losing strength, just barely hanging on.

Maybe, I should just go ahead and let go. Maybe I should have done it already. Maybe I was never supposed to be here, holding on, this long.

I know God won't leave me hanging indefinitely, but sometimes that's the way it feels. I also know that if he isn't tying things up for me, he's probably telling me to let go in the kindest of ways.

But it's hard sometimes, you know, when you've invested so much energy into a thing, when you've fought and bled for it, when you've given pieces of yourself you can't ever get back and time has slipped on through your grip in the process, leaving you feeling old and weathered, as if you've missed the best parts dance right underneath, your own feet out of reach.

When it seems it's all been for nothing.

When finally letting go seems more like failure than relief.

And so, the journey on this farm seems to me to have been an exercise in futility at times, a testing of my patience, the seeping out of me on one very long, slippery, unknotted rope.

When we bought this property fourteen years ago, I was full of optimism. I wasn't out to conquer. I was out to understand. And to contribute. I was younger and brighter then, yet I already understood there would be payment extracted for homesteading. Investment required a portion of myself. But it was the physical part of me I expected to give-was willing to give. It never occurred to me that my greatest sacrifice would be mental and spiritual, a pouring out of my soul, as wet and oily in places as that rope.

That my suffering would change nearly everything about me.

But it would also bring me closer to my Creator than I could have imagined, and certainly more than ever would have been possible elsewhere. And so when I look back on more than a decade of hard labor and harder love, of death over and over and over again, of life real and raw and exposed, of vulnerability, I see the reason for the rope. I see the lessons in hanging on there for dear life. And I guess I'd do it all again, because holding on in the wait, sweat stinging and tears blurring my eyes in equal measure, muscles tired and twitching and ready to give out, breathing strained through the effort, was more gain than I have words for.

I don't have a mental picture of what the future looks like right now. I just know that I need to let go of the rope, even it if means falling. Even if it means I'll want to climb back up and hold on again.

It was a noble calling, turning myself over here.

I think.

But I am giving up the hardest part of it, envisioning a day free of outdoor labor in all weather, schlepping to the barn at all hours, haying and inoculating and feeding and watering and all the rest.

Imagining being free of constant loss.

Free of watching innumerable hours fly by like pollen in an autumn wind.

So I'm getting closer to letting go. I can feel my fingers loosening.

And God waits for me there. He promises to walk with me wherever I go.

The ground below could very well be a lot closer than it looks. Softer too.

But maybe not. One thing is for sure, there are lessons to be found wherever I land.

#milkandhoneyland #milkandhoneylandbook #astoryofgrief,grace,andgoats #dynamicpurpose #findingrainbowsinthewilderness #countryliving #goats


Kansas City, Kansas l jm@jmhuxley.com

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