A message from our founder:
I struggled with putting this on here because the ranch is not about me....it is God's ranch. However, I feel that it is important to share.
God planted the seed for Hoot N Holler Ranch in my heart over 28 years ago. Drawing from my own personal experience, the ranch was originally meant to house battered women/children, pairing them with abused animals as therapy. The mountains called out to me, offering comfort and refuge... a perfect setting to heal a heart that was broken. So, off I go to Tennessee without knowing a soul, with the faith that this was my path. As a single mother, I had no idea how to actually make this happen, but I was never able to forget about it. It would lay on my heart daily, and God would NOT allow me to let it go.
I would wake up from dreams filled with business ideas. Yes! That must be it! Grow the business...fund the ranch. I would dive into them, head first, with the hope that "this one will be it" but each time...there was always an obstacle that would prevent it...a stopping point...where I couldn't go any further. I struggled daily to understand what he was trying to tell me. I slipped, I fell, I was angry. I knew WHAT he wanted me to do.....I just did not understand HOW to give it life.
Most would consider the attempts failures, and to be honest, most of the time I would feel like I was the one who let Him down. But, each time I would learn something. I would have taught myself a new skill or make another connection...So, I chose not to see them as failures, but as stepping stones. I knew that it was bigger than me. For many years, I was stuck in an endless circle of trying to understand what God was trying to say. I struggled with self-doubt, wondering why he picked me for something so precious... so BIG. I knew that everyone around me was questioning why I would continue to try. But - I KEPT TRYING anyway. I was thankful for the burning fire that he put in my soul, even if I didn't understand it.
When my youngest child got diagnosed with chronic illnesses, my world shifted drastically. What now? How can I do this now? I panicked at first and then was filled with an indescribable calmness. I stepped back and was quiet. Quiet for the first time that I can remember. I watched a happy energetic child change into a shell of who she was. It was then when I connected with God on a deeper level and could feel the shift. This ranch was meant for her and for all of the other children out there who suffer from these illnesses. I realized THEY need a place to heal ... to find refuge...to recharge their spirit... to battle the depression with others that share their struggles. Others who understand. As soon as I started working on the ranch again...as soon as I picked up my phone...THERE IT WAS! The ranch! It has everything that we will need for both the families and animals. Throughout the years, the structuring of the ranch had already been done, and now He has placed the home of Hoot N Holler Ranch within reach.
After meeting with the realtor, my best friend and I knew this was the right fit. I no longer had any doubt in all of the steps, falls, stumbles, and "failures" it took to get here. It was no longer on my time but on God's. We instantly got to work. Setting everything in motion. The HOW was finally laid out like a flashing road map. Yes, it is going to take a lot of donations...I know. But I now realize that this is not just my journey to walk alone......it is for us all to walk...together. We now have a team of people working toward this mission of HOPE, FAITH, AND LOVE.
Every donation is a confirmation of its importance and of God's promise- that all things are possible with Him! It is now in His hands, and with Him.....it will happen! And the best part is..... everyone will now be able to witness it.