This morning I was putting fly masks on the horses as I do every morning.
One of our 2-year-olds, Delilah, decided she wasn’t going to have any of it. This is a common theme with little Delilah, not wanting to be caught, so we keep a halter on her. Generally, I can grab the halter and then put the mask on. Today she pulled away from me and wouldn’t let me get near her.
If you know horses, you know if a horse decides not to be caught, you’ve got to keep going until you catch them. Otherwise, you’re teaching them that running away solves the problem (for them that is!) and it will become a habit. So I started the process of moving Delilah off every pile of hay until I had her separated from the herd. She still wouldn’t allow me to catch her. So I had to begin making her run with the idea that she’d realize it was easier to let me catch her than to use up all her energy.
One of the reasons I love Delilah so much is that she is just like me.
She’s a quick learner, extremely soft-hearted, and very willing to please (once she’s caught!). However, she is very strong-willed, loves her freedom, and wants to do things on her terms. I knew this would be a lengthy process, as it always is when she decides not to submit to my wishes, so I asked Jesus to give me a hand so I could get her quickly. I hadn’t eaten breakfast yet so I didn’t want to spend a lot of time trying to catch her!
It’s extremely important to keep strong boundaries with horses, especially babies like my Delilah. So giving up is never an option. Every battle she wins is a step backwards. After an hour of making her run I was dripping in sweat and absolutely starving. I found myself getting angry and I said “Come on Jesus, give me a break!!” Sometimes He takes a while to respond but not today. Almost immediately He said, “Now you know how I feel!” Wow, that hit home hard! I was trying to catch Delilah to put her fly mask on which would protect her from flies getting in her eyes and biting her face. I was also going to give her some grain and let her get back to her breakfast. But she wanted to do things her way and refused to see that coming to me would bring her all kinds of good things!
I am often getting ahead of Jesus and even though I keep Him in sight through prayer throughout my day, I rarely have quiet time with Him. When I do, I feel rested, invigorated and recharged. I also get Divine guidance on how to run the ranch from the only One who really knows how to do so. After all, it is His ministry!
As soon as I realized Jesus was trying to tell me something, Delilah quit running and I was able to catch her.
I scratched her neck, which is one of her favorite things, took her to get a drink of water, fed her some grain, and finally put her fly mask on before turning her loose at a pile of hay. All that running she did, trying to handle things on her own, just made her hot and tired. Once she submitted she was given all the things she loves. Just like Jesus does for me when I take on His yoke and submit to Him! So next time you’re running so fast you don’t have time to think, stop and spend some time with Jesus.
He will bring you rest and help you focus on what’s truly important! And you might get a few sweet surprises you weren’t counting on!
“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 11:28-30