Written by Jami Stiefle, APFUM Board member
All of last year, I kept getting phone calls and messages from my close friends and even family that were struggling with fear and anxiety. I could see it changing who they were and I could see the devil stealing their joy away from them. Of course, I wanted to help but I didn’t know how because those feelings were something I had never dealt with. At the same time, I began to have severe health problems that seemed to be getting worse. I got to the point where I was begging God and asking him “Why God, I have so much that I want to do, how can this possibly be the plan you have for me?” I remember the night He answered me like it was yesterday. As I was asking God to take this from me, these words came to me. “Jami, you have to see what it feels like to hurt so bad on the inside that you can barely get out of the bed, but to look at you from the outside, no one knows you are hurting. That is exactly how people feel with anxiety and depression. It’s not tangible, but it is real.”
APFUM founder Tammie Price also experienced a time like this last year in her life. As Covid was at its peak, she had a friend reach out to her for help. She was battling depression and in such a bad place, she lost her will to live. She kept herself heavily sedated and refused to eat. The day Tammie got the call that Diane was gone, she began asking God “God, how can any good come from this?” She couldn’t find any peace and decided to go for a walk to clear her mind. She ended up standing at the gate that was attached to a horse farm. As she was standing there a rush of wind came over her and these words came to her heart: “My love never fails. I love Diane and everyone else that suffers from depression and suicidal thoughts and I have a plan to give them a future and a hope.” She also remembered that Heather, a former graduate of the A Place For Us program and was the lead house staff for two years, believed “one day a horse farm would be a part of this ministry.”
Tammie was led to a Youtube video by Karen Wheaton called Meet Me At The Barn. The wind that came over Tammie that day as she was at the horse farm, was the same strong wind that rushed into the barn in the video. Later that day, she ran into someone who knew Diane and knew Diane loved A Place For Us and wanted to volunteer and help others. She told Tammie she was headed to the Alcoves to make a donation in Diane’s memory because even though she was no longer here, she would still be helping.
Over a year ago, I was given a book by someone I work with called Jubilee. He placed this book on my desk without any explanation but told me that he felt led to give me this book to read. At the time, I had no idea what God had in store but after hearing about Diane's story and how Tammie was led to a horse farm, I told Tammie she needed to read that book.
Katy Pistol, who is the author of Jubilee, currently runs a horse farm in Virginia. She has been involved with equine therapy for 30+ years and has agreed to come to South Carolina or wherever God leads us to train our staff and horses. WOW! Only God!
There are numerous God stories that have confirmed the vision He has in store for this farm!
Below is a vision board and a video link that shows the concept that God has revealed thus far! We have started a Farmhouse booth at the Alcoves and the profits will go towards Meet Me At The Barn.