It’s a small crowd, maybe 50 people, gathered on an October day to hear a singer-songwriter play, hike on the mountain, eat a potluck spread of good food.  Some of those who attend will stay the night, camping on the mountain or crashing on the floor of the barn.  Others will drive in for the evening and then go home.  Everyone is here for the same things – good music, good food, good community, and good work.

Meander, the God’s Whisper Mascot and Model for What I Hope Folks Feel Here

This is my dream for God’s Whisper farm. 

I want this to be a place where people come to rest – writers and musicians for long weekends or week-long/month-long retreats, other folks for afternoons or weekends where they will hear a reading or listen to some great music. I want this to be a place where the arts are appreciated, where nature is respected, where community is found.  Think Levon Helm’s glorious rambles on a smaller, less famous scale.

I also want this to be a place where the community that gathers here works for change in our world. I want this place to serve. So somehow, all of these activities will help financially support non-profits working to alleviate poverty, ease suffering, and give a voice to the voiceless.  I imagine that each concert or reading will be include a talk by someone from a nonprofit and that (ideally) all of the proceeds from these evenings will go toward a specific project of that organization.

I have no idea how I will do this, but I know I can’t do this alone.I need help.  I need folks who will come help clear trails and build an outdoor amphitheater. I need financiers and folks who will help promote. I need musicians and writers who will come to stay and to share.  I need all these things, eventually.

But just now, I need you to dream with me. I need people to stand beside me as I work to make this real. I need cheerleaders and champions.

What I don’t need, at this moment, is naysayers. I don’t need folks who want to point out the cost of this kind of endeavor or the logistical challenges of getting people to such a remote place.  All of that wisdom will come and be needed later.  Right now, I just need dreamers.

I have such big ideas – of yurts and cabins where people can “hermit out” for a few days. Of trails that wind by the spring house and up to the ridgeline. Or goats and alpacas tame enough for children to pet and play with. Of great food kicked in a brick oven and on grills and over fires. Of concerts that leave us breathless and readings that make our souls flip. Of people coming here to gather, to rest, to tie ourselves together a little tighter in a world that so often feels like it’s coming apart. Of hope brought to people whose days seem worse than hopeless.  Such big ideas . . . and I am beyond excited.

So will you dream with me? Will you share what images come to your mind as you hear this idea? Will you tell me that, maybe, someday, you’d come help or come listen or come stay?