Learning to partner with a horse requires trust, patience and time. Grand Prix dressage horses, nor world class show jumpers or eventers are not made overnight. Cowboys spend years developing relationships with their horses and from the most experienced to the least, anyone who has ever had the privilege of working alongside these beautiful animals knows there are many steps along the way before we can flow and dance together.
What makes a 500 kg+ horse, a powerful mass of quivering senses and a flight animal take the first step into an unknown situation? What makes them willing to take a first step forward to do something that really is completely unnatural for a flight animal?
The answer is trust in the one who is asking the question. Trust must be earned, of course horses like people can be bullied, coerced and manipulated which might produce an initial result, but not a trusted partnership.
Fear is the thing that holds them and us back from taking a step forward, but with time, patience and love, they begin to trust in their handler.
We are all living with uncertainty today like we have never seen before in most of our lifetimes, although every generation before has been no stranger to uncertainty. How do we navigate uncertain times? How can we not get overwhelmed by the chaos and noise that surrounds us?
I believe it is taking a first step, just like a horse tentatively deciding whether it will follow its handler or not.
The question is who do we trust?
The government? the media? conspiracy theorists? anti-vaxxers?, pro-vaxxers? the list is endless and we can be completely overwhelmed.
This is the time to STOP, be accountable to what we choose to read, watch or listen to, to develop quietness and stillness in our minds and bodies. To take a first step is to be intentional. We can draw upon what we already know to be true.
Rest, exercise, diet, staying positive, looking out for others, are all good starts, but on our own, just like a horse without a kind and patient handler, we can make a start, but very quickly turn back to fear again.
There is a leader that can be trusted, his name is Jesus Christ. He is gentle and humble in spirit and his promise to us is to carry the weight of our fears, burdens and worries because of his great love for us.
Today is you are feeling the weight of the world on your shoulders, He invites you to come to him just as you are and spend some quiet time with him. He is waiting patiently and longing to help you.
In these uncertain times, we can be confident of what has already gone before us, and we can have hope to be able to take that all important first step.
"Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light". Matthew 11:28