WHAT HE HAS DONE
Birth of a vision...
In 2014, as we sat in church on a regular Sunday morning, longtime friends of ours, Jimmy and Cindy Thompson, were sharing about their recent mission trip to Texas where they worked with a long-term restoration home for victims of human trafficking. The place they visited used horses to help in the restoration process. As they were sharing, Chris and I both began to cry. The Holy Spirit had awakened something in us that we didn't even recognize yet. We began to support their vision of bringing a similar ministry to Virginia, thinking at the time, that we would possibly manage the horse farm aspect.
AND A NEW DIRECTION IN LIFE
Preparing our hearts...
AND MAKING ROOM FOR HIS PLANS
Around the same time (probably even a bit earlier), the Lord began to prepare Chris for the day when he would retire from his position at the Albemarle County Police Department, the county that surrounds Charlottesville, Virginia. Chris mentioned it to me a couple of times and each time I would have an almost visceral reaction. I felt nauseous at the thought of losing our main source of income with our growing family to support.
Sell your home...
AND SHOW US A NEW WAY TO LIVE
Early 2016 brought us our first big leap of faith. In the middle of what most Americans would consider The American Dream, God spoke again and told us to sell our home. As scary as it was to think of leaving our home of ten years, we were starting to outgrow it and we thought we were just moving to a slightly larger home in another suburban neighborhood.
God had better plans than we could have ever imagined and just in the nick of time, we found a beautiful home to rent on a farm with people who have become our family and have helped God show us a more connected way of life.
Time for change...
THE SECOND BIG LEAP
In the fall of 2016, we were still supporting our friends with their vision to start a long-term restoration home and horse ministry for victims of human trafficking (True Mission). Chris and I decided that we should look into what exactly a horse ministry is. We spent an afternoon googling, learning, and feeling excited about the possibilities. That Sunday, after church, Chris fervently prayed and asked God if a horse ministry is what He is calling us to do. God confirmed that and told Chris he needed to quit his job as soon as possible. When he told me what God shared with him, it was the first time that I had absolutely no hesitation about that decision and we immediately wrote the resignation letter. Chris had just passed the 20-year mark as a police officer with the Albemarle County Police.
Sharing the journey
WE HAVE A NAME...AND A WEBSITE
In December of 2016, as friends, family, and our church family began to hear about the vision God had given us to start a horse ministry, everyone was curious about the journey we had embarked on. What started out as a personal journal quickly became a website with a blog so that we could share the story God is writing with our lives.
Living & Learning
AND LEANING MORE AND MORE ON OUR HEAVENLY FATHER
2017 was a year of learning for the Beck family. We went to Crystal Peaks Youth Ranch in Bend, OR, for a 4-day clinic on starting a horse ministry, we learned how to tend to hay, our oldest child learned how to operate all manner of farm equipment, we learned about gardening, caring for dairy cows, Chris learned to ride horses, and we were joyfully expecting our fifth child. Most importantly, Chris began an internship with a local ministry called Love INC, and learned about running a ministry from an insiders perspective. We were invited to share our story at our home church and God started to awaken the same vision in some of our friends.
This is God's ministry and to be true to Him, it must be built on three key things:
Rooted in the Word of God
The leading of the Holy Spirit
March of 2018 marked our first, official, Risen Ridge meeting. Through prayer, brainstorming, role-playing, and discussion, He has given us the Mission Statement, the Vision statement, and the values.
As of July 3, 2019, Risen Ridge Ministry is an IRS recognized 501(c)3 nonprofit!!!!!!
To read about what is happening now, see What's Happening Today...