My random, sometimes insightful thoughts on life, God, family, and everything else

The birth of “Acorn Ridge”

Over the last several weeks I’ve had several people ask me about our property and how things are coming along. If you remember I shared with you all our dream of opening up a retreat center for Pastors, Missionaries, Military and Law Enforcement Chaplains, and other leaders in our post when we were selling our home. ┬áSince moving in on December 23rd…yes you read that correctly two days before Christmas, (oh and we had family staying with us, we just like to do things difficult) we have made a ton of progress!

The most exciting and recent development is that we are now an officially recognized non-profit business in the state of Indiana. I went through the process of writing our Articles of Incorporation (yeah that was fun), jumping through the appropriate hoops, and cutting the necessary red tape, and we received our notification on Monday. So, we now are officially Acorn Ridge Retreats Inc. Now, I get to go through the exciting and exuberayting process of applying for 501 c3 status with the Federal government…anyone want to help with that?

Here are some of the physical things we’ve been up to:

  • There are two houses on the property, one is the main log cabin, and the other is a 2
    IMG_0221

    Daisy looking very despondent because of all the work to do

    IMG_0154

    One bedroom after drywall and primer

    IMG_0289

    The flooring that made me limp for a month!

    bedroom stick-built home that was pretty much trashed. I pretty much gutted the house, and I am still in process of putting it all back together again. Our oldest daughter Kaitlyn, is currently living in the house, but once she moves on from us…a little tear just fell…we will open up that house to our guests.

  • There is a small, 400 sq ft, cabin that the previous owners used as a practice run for the main cabin. It is just an empty shell, but our plan for that is to turn it into a ‘tiny home’ for our guests as well. Unlike the stick built home, I haven’t had a chance to do anything with this yet. But, I’m hoping as I wrap up some of the other projects currently going on around the property I’ll be able to start getting this piece ready for guests as well.

 

  • Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been working on a piece of the property that I hadn’t even thought of before, but after a conversation with a friend, I realized what a cool tool it could be. I took an overgrown, but fairly level piece of the land and tore IMG_0520it all up, I removed trees, shrubs, a few woodland creatures…don’t worry there’s lots of land for them to move to…and created a nice ‘camping’ area where those who travel around the country in RV’s could come and park and enjoy the retreat area as well. Yesterday afternoon I had 12 cubic yards of stone delivered and I began the process of graveling so that they could easily level their traveling homes and enjoy an extended stay. The IMG_4540only thing left to do is to run a 50Amp line for them to plug in and water. Hey, anyone have a trencher or Ditch-Witch just laying around???
  • There is an extensive flower bed and stone bed system on the property. However, all of the beds were badly overgrown. We’ve killed, uprooted, and hacked out about 80% of the vegetation and now are preparing to lay a ton…literally…a ton of mulch.

You may read all of this and be asking yourself, ‘why in the world would they do this, are they just that bored?’ No, I promise you, with everything going on at Friendship and all of the growth, construction, and everything that comes with it, we are FAR from bored. But, several years ago we were blessed beyond belief with our sabbatical, and from that point on we’ve been asking God to allow us to be a blessing like that in the lives of other pastors and leaders who bear such a heavy burden on a regular basis, and who rarely if ever have the luxury of just being a human being. This is not just a dream for us, but a labor of love. Our hope is that through this extension of Friendship Church we will either directly or indirectly save some leaders from burnout, some marriages from failing, and some churches from deep hurt. The verse we’ve chosen as our theme is Hebrews 6:10 NLT, here’s what it says:

For God is not unjust. He will not forget how hard you have worked for him and how you have shown your love to him by caring for other believers, as you still do.

Believe it or not, our first guest will be coming the weekend of June 17th, which is about 2 years before we planned on it, but hey, God always has better, bigger, and more beautiful plans than we do!

This is Traci and my dream, but it’s an extension of Friendship, and every ministry family served will be served by you! Thank you for your faithfulness, for your love of our family and all of our leadership families, and thank you for allowing me to be your pastor! You guys are awesome!!!

Dave

6 responses

  1. Denise Patten

    I think that is a wonderful thing to do! We have a friend who a pastor and lived on a lake, literally his backyard was a lake, in Terre Haute. He would have pastors and their wives come and stay with them and they could fish on the lake for the weekend as a short retreat.
    God bless you guys and we miss Friendship Church!!

    May 25, 2016 at 1:01 pm

  2. Hey Denise,
    We miss you guys so much, but it’s great having Alex here! We are hoping it really blossoms into a phenomenal blessings for ministry couples and are excited to see what’s next!

    May 25, 2016 at 1:44 pm

  3. Debra McDowell

    Excited to see God’s plans in process and His next step. Praying for you and your family in this new adventure. Much love to all.

    June 3, 2016 at 12:13 pm

  4. Thanks Debbie, we are pretty pumped!

    June 4, 2016 at 2:21 pm

  5. Pingback: 3 Weeks off makes you think!? | DaveCrandall.Me

  6. That is absolutely fantastic! What beautiful property! It’s just a few miles from where my husband grew up!

    November 18, 2016 at 6:53 pm

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