• Stephanie Black

A Blonde Farmgirl in the Making


This week 1 year ago, the world was starting to shut down. 1 year. I’d say let that sink in... buuuuut it might be better just to ignore that reality. It’s been a long year. It’s been a hard year. So much has happened in the last year. I’ve experienced some of the best moments that life has to offer in the last year… and some that have forever changed me. And today I decided I missed writing these blogs. But also, I’m super excited for all of those first round of coronavirus memes to show up in my photo memories next week. I have a “Back to the Future” need to take my poor naïve self from a year ago aside and tell her…. Nope, scratch that idea. I don’t even have words. Ignorance really is bliss... I think.


Actually you know what friends? I do have one thing I would go back and tell myself a year ago. Buy more dresses… You’re going to need them. #stayhomestaysafe #2weekstoslowthespread #3weekpause #14daystoflattenthecurve #eradicatealldisease



1. Today I became the poster child for DO NOT COLOR YOUR HAIR WITH BOXED HAIR DYE. I made this huge life decision recently. Like a decade-in-the-making life-decision. Like big change life-decision. I know… I know… get to it already. I decided to go back to blonde. Wait? What? Back to blonde? Ok, so if you’ve only met me in the last decade... fun fact: I was blonde until I was 28... and then I went black and never looked back (there’s for sure some good jokes in there somewhere… about my name people… about my name). Anyway, by back to blonde what I mean is that months from now you might actually begin to see some blonde in my hair... because apparently what 10 years of box color means is... you might as well shave your head and start over. Don’t worry, no shaving going on here. I have a huge fear of female balding. So... instead it’s a slow process of stripping the black out over and over and over again.


Because apparently I haven’t had enough lessons on patience and waiting in my life.


But also, Alexis Matney at The Retreat Salon in Fenton is the best.


2. In case you need picture proof of the past. #Blonde


3. Wondering what’s happening in my life right now? Besides the whole blonde thing. I’m living with a family who have loved me so well that I can’t even talk about it without crying. Who am I kidding? I’ve got the tears thing mastered these days. Like I don’t even attempt makeup most days because I’m just that good at it. Don’t feel bad though. I don’t mind the tears. It’s where the Lord has me right now. Through the sad tears, the happy tears, the totally in awe tears, and ‘what the heck is happening?’ tears, the Lord has taught me so much. And, in the end, it’s real. And the reality is in the uncertainty and craziness that is life, I crave real these days.


But back to that family. They live on a farm. Kind of. By farm I mean horses, chickens, dogs and a cat. Said family left for vacation this morning. And guess who they left in charge?! For those of you that know me, know my track record with animals is…. well…. let’s just say… not that great. Ask me about my ducks sometime… or my parent’s dog. Just don’t ask me about cats... if you like cats. I want you to still like me. If you don’t like cats… well we can probably be best friends. So I’m in charge. And check out this view. And the dog. The dog decided to pose for my picture. Because I very nicely asked him to obviously.


4. Totally honesty. I feel like I conquered the world by collecting these 8 eggs. Like I could accomplish nothing else today and basically would still be succeeding at life over here. Just sayin’. Maybe I’ve got a little bit of a farm girl in me after all. Plus, this seems like a good reason to expand my collection or rain / mud boots, right?


5. I’d bring back the dress collection…. But the majority of my clothes are in storage. So if you want to see more of my dresses I’m going to need you to join me in praying that the Lord gives me some clear direction as to what’s next in life. And speaking of dresses... since we are doing this whole real and raw and totally honesty thing… I’ve definitely bought more dresses. And that’s all we are saying about that. So while the dresses are on pause… passive aggressive shirts will for sure be making an appearance... but for right now I feel like #5 on these blogs needs to be used with something else. We’ve established that it’s been a year. In this year…. in the good and the bad… in the joy and the suffering… the Lord has taught me so much. I started reading through the Bible this year. It’s a crazy story how this came about. I had a plan. The Lord had a different plan. Story of my life. And so in the beginning of January I started reading through the Bible front to back. I’m in Ezekiel. Ezekiel is weird. Well, there’s a lot in the Old Testament that’s kind of weird... buuuut... Ezekiel might be the winner, friends. Am I allowed to say that?


Anyway, I started reading through the Bible, not for what I could get out of it or how it would apply to my life right now, but with the simple petition of “Ok, Lord, show me who you are.” I’ve struggled so deeply through so many things in the last few months that I just needed to know who God is. And so I read. And I read. And I read. And about three weeks in, in the middle of the night I woke up and had a thought, because obviously my best thoughts come in the middle of the night.


Background to this thought: Growing up in church, I feel like it can be pretty easy to dismiss the Old Testament. Not in a bad way. It’s incredible stories, but stories like that just don’t happen today. No one is splitting the large bodies of water in half, the whole earth isn’t flooding, regardless of what global warming enthusiasts would like us to think, walls aren’t magically falling down because a group of people are walking around them (I really feel like there’s a good Trump wall joke in there somewhere), and Old Testament law aren’t necessarily for us today. (Now, before anyone gets too defensive about my use of the word dismiss and Old Testament in the same sentence... Yes, I'm aware that the whole Old Testament points to Christ and has application for us today, but that isn't the lesson the Lord had for me in this moment)


There's this fabulous verse in Malachi 3:6 that says, “For I, the Lord, do not change.” And as I’ve read through the Old Testament, my middle-of-the-night lightbulb moment that left me in awe was just how apparent the character of God is in the Old Testament.


That God, the one that created the earth and us, the one who gave Adam, Eve, because he knew it wasn’t good for man to be alone, the one that made promises to Noah and Abraham and Jacob and Joseph and Moses, the one that split the Red Sea, took down the walls of Jericho, and did so many incredible miracles, that God is the same God we serve today. We just get to be on this side of the cross and we get to live under so much grace because of Christ's death for us. But that God... over and over and over again in the Old Testament... he shows us that he is gracious, and loving, and kind, and faithful. He delivers, and protects, and provides, and listens, and answers. He sees our tears. He hears our petitions. He can be trusted. He is good. And man have I struggled with his goodness. But that’s another blog post for another day.


But today, today if you haven’t ever sat down and read the Bible simply asking the question, “OK, God, show me who you are.” I would encourage you to do that.

Not for what you can get out of it, not to solve whatever problem or struggle you are currently in, not because you need to check reading your Bible off your to-do list for the day, but simply to learn who God is. I'm pretty sure I can promise you that you’ll be left in awe. It could even be life changing.


Apparently I had a lot of words in me today.


Till tomorrow, friends.


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