Giving Thanks in a Problematic Year

This is the time of the year when we close our books on the fiscal year, and as such, we see the businesses and individuals who have donated to our projects, both in cash and supplies. We also look at the volunteers who have given their time and labor for nothing more than the enjoyment of working with sheep, doing good works, and the knowledge they acquire. Midway through the year the song Reason by Unspoken came to dominate my playlist. It is a really good song, but the first two lines did not match the year we were having:

This year’s felt like four seasons of winter
And you’d give anything to feel the sun

I realize in 2020 things have been all sideways, and not all has been well for many, but we have seen blessing after blessing in both volunteers and donations.

Once again Sage Woolens has been a major supporter of our programs, consistently helping to keep the sheep happy. Their donation to the fencing of the new pasture was phenomenal, and quite timely. We were three weeks out from starting the fencing project when they notified us that they were sending a sizable check. Our practice of not soliciting donations applies to our benefactors the same as any other individual. We don’t. So when they told us the check was on the way, it was both an unanticipated and wonderful blessing.

The generosity of Idaho Farm Animal Sanctuary (IFAS) was amazing. In October, completely on their own, they used their platform and network to do a fundraiser benefiting us. What nobody but our board knew, was that in June we needed a little more cash to finish our new pasture. One of our donors who supplies matching funds contacted us, and offered to advance us matching funds if we needed it to finish the project. We took the advance knowing that by the end of the year we had to have additional donations to warrant the matching funds. After a week of prayer, we let it go and forgot about it. In November when we received the check from IFAS, it not only covered the advance of matching funds, but qualified us for additional matching funds which went to our winter hay.

Golden Valley Vinegar Once again the folks over at Golden valley Vinegar supplied us with apple cider vinegar for the sheep. Most people do not know this, but where humans prefer sweet, sheep prefer sour. Apple cider vinegar is both a treat to them, and a tonic for the rumen. We are happy that they have

We would like to tell you all about the anonymous matching funds, but they are anonymous. They covered a large part of our costs this year, and we already have a commitment to as much next year as well.

We are very thankful for the many volunteers who have been helping out this year, we have hit an all time high in the sheer number of volunteers, which was surprising considering this has been a year of covid and gathering restrictions. Some of the volunteers were only in the area temporarily. We cherish their contributions and are attempting to keep in touch with them. Thanks to the internet, Germany or Georgia is as close as the keyboard or phone. We continue to pray that they are both bold and effective in their labors. We will dive deeper on the volunteers in another post.

In review the year seems to have gone more like the Anthony Brown & group therAPy song B.O.B Bounce.

You wanna see a blessing just look at me
Don’t hate, take it up with God, He did it.