I have grown up with horses all of my life. God has taught me patience through perseverance. In many areas of my life the characteristic of patience shows through working with horses. Horses truly are a blessing to have and they can teach you about yourself. I enjoy the companionship and joy they bring, yet not all of the time do things go by as an easy breeze.
The times that I have found myself in need of patience is when my horse frightens because of a shadow or an object and he will not move forward. A horse’s first instinct is to run away from danger completely! I was at a trail ride competition a couple of years ago and my horse Seven would not go down into a deep and narrow ditch. I tried several times to get him into the ditch and not get flustered, but he tried to jump across it and around it multiple times. A horse trainer attended the clinic and he offered to help me with my struggle with getting my horse to walk into the ditch. After many exercises and attempts to get his mind off how frightening the ditch appeared; Seven, breathing deeply out of fear, and not completely sure with what he was going to do went down into the ditch and my heart instantly lightened. The patience that the trainer and I had, calmed and showed him that everything was okay in the long run! He took his time going through the ditch to make sure everything would be alright and letting him do this he overcame his fear!
Humans resemble horses because they tend to react on the spur of the moment, like how Seven did in this situation. He wanted to get out of the ditch immediately once he went into it because of anxiety. When things get tough or scary I want to run away or go around them, yet times like that you need to calmly think what you should do. I have learned that when times get too tough I want to put my head down and not give in due to my stubbornness, because I don’t know what to do next and pride sets into my heart.
When I work with my horse and he gets confused or doesn’t understand he tends to act stubborn and difficult; times like this I learn patience and go through the steps of helping him understand and stay cool. If I get heated and frustrated trying to teach him, things just gets more confusing for him and the lesson I attempt to teach him goes no where!
I believe that growing up with horses not only do you gain patience but also compassion and love. Horses truly give back to you what you teach them. The more you work with communicating with them the more they will respond to you and what you are asking them to do. I also believe that this all applies to getting along with my family and friends. God teaches me patience daily.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.