Agápē (ah•GAH•pey) is the word for the truest, purest form of love; God’s love.
Brian and I stumbled on to this property in the Sam Houston National Forest by pure luck…it was one of those “God Things.” The house was old, like your great grandma’s house type old. No central a/c or heating, no insulation. Unsealed windows, which means whatever seasonal bugs are out and about also become your roommates (think: lovebugs, flies, Asian beetles, wasps, scorpions, etc). Pier and beam floors that creak with every step and whatever the current weather is creeps up through the cracks chilling or heating your toes. The buildings are run down, pasture untamed and over-ran with 100 years of hoarding from the previous owners. It was love at first sight. Looking back, I see how ridiculous it seems, but we called our realtor from the property and begged her to put a contract on it before we’d even seen the inside of the house. She delicately talked us out of that (because she’s good at her job) but we knew it’s where we were supposed to be.
The truth is, at no point in our, so far, 10 years of marriage did we plan to have a farm. Quite the opposite actually, having grown up on a cattle farm, my husband swore he’d never choose that life. But God slowly and quietly led us from one thing to another, He gently guided us in His way and for once we listened (many times unknowingly). Before we had even signed our names on the closing documents, we felt the culmination of many difficult years, along with many beautiful trauma blessings, and God leading us to this place…we unintentionally began calling it The Agápē Farm. God’s love brought us here.
So here we are, not really knowing the first thing about farming! Brian handles all the farm projects, demo, repairs, re-building, pen & paddock maintenance, land clearing and cleanup. In addition to ALL of that, he home schools our kids. Meanwhile I, Brandi, have an unconventional “9-5” running a business and when I’m not doing that, I manage our animal husbandry, handle daily animal snuggle sessions, along with livestock record keeping, research and farm planning/organization. Our children have become huge contributors to our success and motivators for all the crazy things we decide to take on.
Together we dream big and stress about how to accomplish those dreams or we get excited about them, it just depends on the day.
Today, our primary goal is to have a homestead where our family can be self-sufficient growing, loving and then humanly harvesting our own food. Tomorrow’s goal is to somehow take what we’ve learned or anything we have to offer, be-it the food itself, farm life, employment, access to the animals, farm tours, farm knowledge, a sanctuary, retreat or farm boot camp and create a ministry. We are anxious to grow what we love into something other people can love.
All that said, we have no clue what the future holds for us and this rickety little farm we’re building but we feel like He’s got us right where He wants us.