It was May of 1992 when, with high hopes of a successful future for our family, our first pair of emus was delivered to the farm. During the 2 years between 1992 and 1994, we worked 18 hour days while raising 4 children, working full time jobs, hatching, growing, and marketing the emus, as well as growing tobacco and doing all of the other things that come with a busy life.
During the ice storm of 1994 and after 10 days of no electricity we made the decision to quit our public work jobs and concentrate on moving our business forward.
It was 1995 when bird sales took a nosedive and we hired ourselves out in every capacity we could between the scarce bird sales. We did everything from catching and hauling birds to micro-chipping, sexing, hatching and raising chicks for other people. We both come from surface religious families, and knowing nothing about having a relationship with God and we asked Him for sales to help up to pay our bills and success for our business.
Two years later in 1997, we were exhausted and afraid of what the future looked like. Our credit card debt had reached $60,000.00, we needed to pay college tuition, we were on the verge of losing the farm and struggled to even feed our family. It was at this low time, that a woman we didn’t know very well asked us to drive her to her chemotherapy treatments for her stage 4 cervical cancer. We made these trips with her for several months as the cancer continued to worsen until one day, she collapsed. We took shifts keeping watch over her for the next three weeks as she lay in her coma. When she passed away the day after Christmas, we felt that there must be more to life than this heartache and fear. And through Sharon’s death, God started us on a path of change and growth.
As we stood on our porch that summer, we gave it all over to God; our lives and our business. We realized that we couldn’t do it on our own without Him guiding our steps along the way. The next day, we began to feel our lives change as He began growing our business and thus began an ongoing relationship with the Lord. The Bible, God’s love letter to us, and a Bible believing church, taught us to depend on Him for each breath that we breathe and that as long as we honor and give him the glory, He will walk with us each step that we take in this life. He has put people and circumstances in our life that have mentored and helped to bring us into a closer relationship with Him. Life was not a rose garden nor did he promise one, but it was His promise to never forsake us or leave us as long as we abide in Him that made life worth living. The result has been an unquenchable thirst to know Him. Over the years, our relationship with Jesus has grown closer and stronger as we have learned to share trust and love.
We view our emu business as our mission field where we give the glory of our success and the success of the emu industry to God. Our lives have been blessed by Him in unimaginable ways. He has allowed us to provide jobs for 4 other people in our community so that they may provide for their families. He also gave our youngest son a desire to join us in our business. He has taught us to say with absolute truth and belief, ‘Our God is an awesome God; He is good, all the time, all the time God is good.’
The Binford Family