But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. Luke 2:19 KJV
One day many years ago while riding my horse through the deep woods of East Texas I came upon an old home place. The trees and brush had taken over the yard, the fields, the fruit orchard, the road and everything else. Unless you were very close to the house or the barn you could not tell they were there because of the trees and brush.
It was apparent that no one had lived on the old farm or had even driven on the road for many years. As a matter of fact, I had grown up near this old place and had been all through those woods‚Ä¶but I never knew the farm was there. It was easy to tell that at one time this must have been a very beautiful old farm.
I got off my horse and started looking around. I carefully walked up the steps (the ones that were not rotten) to the old house and onto the front porch. There were still a couple of old rocking chairs sitting on the front porch. I walked into the house through what was left of the screen door. All of the furniture was still in the old house even though most of it was rotten or broken down. In the kitchen the breakfast dishes for two were still sitting on the small kitchen table. The skillet used for cooking breakfast was still on the old wood stove. In the bedroom you could also tell that the bed had not been made when they got up and made breakfast that last morning. The entire house looked as though the people who lived there just got up that morning, had breakfast, walked out the front door, and never returned home.
After looking at the house I walked out the back door and went out to what was at one time, a beautiful old barn. There was an old wagon half way out the front door of the barn. There was an old plow lying on the ground halfway out the side door of the barn. There were several other farm implements on the outside of the barn. There still remained what used to be hay in the hayloft. The rain barrel (like most farms had in those days) had long since been rusted out.
After looking at the house and the barn, I began to walk out toward the field. I was amazed that the rows were still there even though the brush and trees had taken over the field.
After looking at the field I decided to go look at the fruit orchard in back of the house. In those days most farms had a fruit orchard so the family could have fresh fruit for the summer as well as preserves and jelly for the rest of the year. As I walked around, I knew this must have been a beautiful orchard with peach trees, pear trees, and fig trees. Of course by now the orchard had long been abandoned and overgrown with vines.
I then walked around the old house, sat down on the only step to the front porch that was not rotten, and began looking at those beautiful large oak trees that lined the little wagon road coming up to the house.
I began wondering why anyone would just walk off and leave this beautiful old farm and never come back.
After some research I found the answers to my questions. The old farmer and his wife had a daughter who moved away from the farm and never wanted to return. When her parents got old, the daughter came one morning and picked them up after breakfast. She took them to her home in a town an hour away. The old couple never returned to their home as they assumed they would.
The old couple died without having the joy of seeing their beautiful farm again.
At the time of my research the daughter had grown old and had never gone back to the farm and that is why it was in such disrepair.
I would often ride my horse through the woods to the old farm and sit on the front step and dream about living there. I am sure I never shared my discovery with anyone else because it was such a private experience for me. From time to time I would go back to my little private hideaway (the old farm), and pray. For me, it really was a special place to walk with the Lord in the cool of the day.
Jesus went to the mountain to spend time with His father. Moses went to the burning bush to talk with God. Elijah was in the back of the cave when God came to talk to him. My place of solitude with the Lord was the old farm house that had been partially covered with vines. We may not all have a mountain or a burning bush or a cave or an old farm house to get alone with God, but it is good to have some place to meet our Father.
You and I have spent time together at many wonderful places and they have all been special. However, the old farm had to be one of our most special places to meet. Father, that old farm was no doubt one of the most unique places of intercession I have ever been to. It may have been forgotten by others, but not by you. It was You who led me there so I could experience the burning bush as Moses had done. Father‚Ä¶I, like Mary, have hidden these wonderful experiences in my heart because it was so intimate. Thank you Father for leading me to the old farm.
Apostle John Dean Copyright 2009 All Rights Reserved
Alliance International Ministries