It was 1985, about 5:30 in the morning and I was on my way home from the Farmer’s Market on Raymond Blvd. in Newark. The sun was just beginning to come up and it was beautiful. I remember the moment.
It had become obvious that I was no “produce manager…no fruit stand czar”. In fact I had trouble telling a watermelon from a banana. It was clear that this was not the early stages of a new Shoprite chain.
I had driven to the market in our family station wagon to purchase some fruits and vegetables for my farm stand on the top of Mary St. I combined these purchases with some of the vegetables that we were growing on the Mary St. property. On a good day I had sales of $120 with a cost of $150. You didn’t need an M.B.A. to figure out that this was not working.
I had left Corporate America to become a teacher at the new Koinonia Academy. It was suggested that I run a Farm Stand at the top of Mary St. to supplement my Koinonia income.
So, I was a bit discouraged as I made the ride home from Newark. I had just cleverly made my purchases, paying a premium price for some inferior goods…”they had seen me coming.” But as the sun came up, I told the Lord “I realize that this is pretty much a disaster, but the only reason I’m doing this is to try to serve you…to try to give my life more fully to you.. to take a step into the unknown to follow you…. and as a few tears came to my eyes, I knew that all would be well… the Lord was with me…. he had my back, and all would be well with my soul.
Well, it’s 35 years later and the Lord has taken good care of me. The Fruit Stand bit the dust after that first summer, but Koinonia Academy is still going, and I’m still thankful for that summer in 1985 when I had a chance to “put my money where my mouth was”.
I could write a book about that summer and that decision to leave Corporate America to try and give my life more fully to the Lord. We were expecting our 7th child at the time…we went on to have 10..followed by 40 grandchildren. I don’t regret any of it. “All is still well with my soul.”