I was raised in a Christian home. My parents both love the Lord, and taught me and my younger sister and brother to do the same. I asked Jesus to be my Savior at 6 years old. I remember I was riding in the car with my mom on the way home from my grandmother’s house, and asked her how I could ask Jesus into my heart. She prayed with me while we drove, and then made an appointment with our pastor to pray with me as well. I was so excited to be a Christian! As I grew, I continued to grow in my faith as well. At the age of twelve, as I was a camper at Camp LaVida, the Lord called me into missions. I accepted that call. I began to make plans to follow that plan. When I graduated high school, I went to North Greenville University, majoring in Christian Studies. My plan was to finish at NGU, and go to seminary to prepare for the mission field. I got side tracked during my sophomore year (I met a boy), changed my major to art, graduated early with an AA in Fine Arts, got married, settled into a job at Barnes & Noble, and became a momma. I was happy, but always felt the call to missions in my heart. I just knew I had ruined God’s plan for my life by walking away from that call during my college years…
In 2014, my husband of 13 years, walked away from our family. I was crushed. I turned to God to anchor me and remind me of my worth during this time. He was my only sure footing, and I clung to Him. In my pain, I could tangibly feel God loving and guiding me. My relationship with the Lord became more intimate than it had ever been. He lavishly provided for me and my children through everything. He proved His faithfulness over and over again. God even placed me back at NGU to study psychology. He has placed me on a path to becoming a therapist. I didn’t understand that path at the time. I asked Him many times if I had heard Him correctly, but He would assure me to keep moving forward.
On the morning of February 12, 2018, I was driving to work at Barnes & Noble. It was a long drive, and I used that time to talk to God each day. This particular morning, God loving reminded me of all that He had done for me and how He had carried me through the storms that I could not have come through without Him. It almost felt like I was watching a movie in my mind’s eye of His faithfulness in my life. He gave me the image of a river, and stepping stones placed in the river. Each stone represented a step He had provided for me in my life. I was on a large stone, but the water was rising around it. I could see another stone just below the surface ahead of me, but could not step on it yet. I felt like God was telling me to trust Him as He prepared that stone for my step. I was excited to see what God had in store for me. When I got to work that day, my boss let me know that my position at Barnes & Noble had been eliminated. I did not have a job, but Barnes & Noble would pay a week’s pay for each year I had been employed (18 years!). My reaction to losing my job surprised even me. I was not sad, but I was happy and excited to see what the Lord had in store for me. As I left work that day, I asked the Lord to reveal that next stepping stone. I prayed the whole way home. As I sat down to lunch at my kitchen table, God brought Hope Remains Ranch to mind. He clearly told me that Hope Remains was where He was leading me. I contacted Melanie right away, and let her know I was interested in a position at the ranch. The only problem was… there was not a position available, but God kept placing Hope Remains on my heart. I prayed daily for five months for the Lord to make a place for me at Hope Remains Ranch. On July 16, 2018 (two weeks after my severance ran out!), I started my job at Hope Remains Ranch! I am so very excited to be here because I know without a doubt that this is the mission field that God has brought me to. He is so faithful! He can use even our mistakes to bring glory to Him! He restored all that I thought I had ruined!
Another fun fact… I have loved horses for as long as I can remember. Before my call to missions, I wanted to be a vet so I could work with animals, particularly horses. When God called me to the mission field, I gave up that dream because I thought that it did not fit with what God had called me to do. Little did I know, He gave me the love of horses for a purpose. I now get to serve Him and be around these beautiful creatures every day! I love to see how God has used even the small details in my life to fulfill His purpose!