Finding Faith Amidst Challenges…

The Feed Yard Foodie farm was lucky to not be in the path of last week’s winter storm.  We received high winds and cold temperatures, but were blessedly missed by the blizzard.  My heart hurts for all of those folks who lost livestock in the storm.  The devastation is horrific, and this type of event always leaves me asking “Why”.

Today I am thankful for all of the animals that have been entrusted to me, as well as all of the wonderful people who help me to care for them...

Today I am thankful for all of the animals that have been entrusted to me, as well as all of the wonderful people who help me to care for them…

All of us face challenges in our lives.  That is something that we share regardless of our address or occupation.  I believe that the way that we deal with those challenges shows both our personal character and what role faith plays in our hearts.

The prayer below found me on Facebook last night.  I was struck at the beauty of the words, the tenacity of the writer, and the tremendous faith that the prayer demonstrates.  Every where that we look, there are people in need.  I encourage you today to share a bit of kindness—a bit of yourself—with someone who could use a helping hand.

Many thanks to Bobette Schofield for sharing these beautiful words.  They touched my heart and reminded me of the true strength that is found in faith.

The Rancher’s Prayer

The rancher looked toward heaven
And said, “God where have you been?
Do you know we had a blizzard,
With rain and snow and wind?

You know I built this herd of mine____
With blood and sweat and tears.
You know the work and worry,
As I struggled through the years.

Now as I stand and look around,
I see that it is gone.
I don’t know if I have the strength
To rebuild or go on.”

God looked down from heaven____
Saw the pain there in his eyes.
He heard the sadness in his voice.
He knew the sacrifice.

He said, “My son, you’re not alone.
I’m walking there with you____
I’ll give you all the strength you need
For what you have to do.

I’ll give you courage to go on,
Through all this loss and pain.
I’ll give you hope to start once more,
And build your herd again.

I know that this is who you are____
And not just what you do.
And as you’re making your fresh start,
I’ll be right there with you.

Do not think this is a failure,
Or that you’ve done something wrong.
You’re an example of the spirit
That makes South Dakota strong.

So stand up straight and tall my son,
For I have faith in you.
Put yesterday behind you now,
For we’ve got work to do!”

21 Comments

Filed under Animal Welfare, General

21 responses to “Finding Faith Amidst Challenges…

  1. If you are able to to let people know there is a Rancher Relief Fund set up on behalf of the South Dakota Cattlemen’s Association, the SD Stockgrowers Association, and the SD Sheepgrowers Assoc. We have a facebook page set up and will also have a website set up to provide ways to help. Anyone looking to volunteer their time or equipment can contact our Helo line at 8677-708-4357. If you have questions please feel free to contact me. Thank you for the thoughts and prayers.

    • Thank you, Alysa for the additional information. I really appreciate it as it gives readers a place to go to share in the effort.

      All the best to you,
      Anne

  2. Bruce

    Thank you for posting the the rancher’s prayer. I am not a rancher but have enough life experience to know that loss and tragedy will visit most if not all of us. At some point we all have to make choices as to how we deal with the storms of life. Bitterness and anger are options but leave us empty. I prefer to believe in something bigger than myself and choose to put my faith and trust in a creator God. Without that relationship, where is the hope for better days ahead?

    • Beautifully said, Bruce. I agree and I appreciate you taking the time to share. Possibly the best part of a strong faith is the hope and confidence that accompanies it. I know that it inspires me to always search for greatness in my own life.

      It is great to hear from you,
      Anne

  3. Joanne Atwood

    Beautiful. Praying for the ranchers.

    • Thank you, Joanne. I know that there are many that need our prayers today, as well as the many days going forward that it will take to move on to prosperity once again.

      Good to hear from you,
      Anne

  4. Carol

    Your message applies to so many. Loved it and shared on FB.
    Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks, Carol. I appreciate the note and the share. I agree that it is a tremendously moving prayer and message. I know that it spoke to me in a very personal way as I read it last night.

      Anne

  5. Michele Rager

    Thanks for posting this, Anne! Such devastation for these folks! This world is full of “bad” things that steal many things from us…but we are “more than conquerors” through Him that loves us! The last paragraph speaks volumes to that. Thanks again, and I am so sorry for the loss of your grandfather…what an example!

    • Thank you, Michele. I agree that my grandfather was an incredible individual, and he and my grandmother’s devotion to each other (spanning more than 70 years) is nothing short of amazing. They both carried a great amount of faith and played a huge role in making me the person that I am today. I am looking forward to seeing my grandmother next week!

      All the best,
      Anne

  6. Great article. That is either a chunk of a chestnut horse, or you are very petite! Lol! I make all my horses look like ponies thanks to my 5ft10 height!

  7. Rex

    Anne,
    Some of the worst wreaks are reported to have happened to people who got their cattle into the corral for protection, only to have them buried and unable to escape. Sometimes, even what we think is wise is not enough.
    Our cattle were safe, but the heifers walked over the fence on a snowdrift that was so hard that we rode our horses over the fence to put them back. The top wire was totally buried and the horses didn’t even fuss like they normally do near wire. Our problem was the heifers had gotten into a neighbors cornfield and we spent the rest of the day making sure we did not lose any to acidosis.

    • Rex,

      I am glad to hear that you and your livestock weathered the storm successfully. You are right—what we think is best isn’t always. Trying to figure out Mother Nature is always a frustrating experience. Hopefully we will settle into some nice fall weather for a few weeks in order to let folks get caught up.

      Take care,
      Anne

  8. Love the prayer… glad the storm missed you all. I feel so bad for those who had such losses from it 😦

    • Kim,

      It’s good to hear from you. I hope that all is well back east.

      The devastation from the storm is tragic. I always really struggle with weather events like this—Mother Nature can be so harsh. While the storm blessedly missed us, my family is going through some other significant challenges right now. The poem really spoke to me and was a very timely reminder of the importance of a strong faith.

      Take care,
      Anne

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