Spiritual Lesson from a Horse

horse object lesson spiritual lesson


Post from the archive.

I was harnessing our miniature horses to take my grandchildren for a ride.  There are a lot of different hooks and buckles that need to be attached carefully, or someone can get hurt. I broke the rule. ​

I was almost finished harnessing Comanche when the children got into an argument over whose helmet was whose. I stopped harnessing to address the argument. I lost my place before I completed the harnessing.


Thinking the horse was harnessed properly, I unhitched Comanche from the barn wall and got in the cart with my whip (I always go on a test drive before I take the children).

Runaway Horse!

Comanche immediately bolted from the barn in a full gallop. I instantly pulled on the reigns only to find I had forgotten to clip the reins to the horse’s bit –the most essential hook! I was on a runaway horse.  

 β€‹A runaway horse is bad; a runaway horse with an attached cart carrying a middle-aged woman is a nightmare. Mentally I knew pulling on the reins was useless, but I kept pulling and hollering, “Whoa!” Comanche misinterpreted my whoa as, “Faster, faster!”

My children, and grandchildren watched in horror as the horse took off across the pasture. I had many thoughts in those few seconds. God help me! I said this many times loudly (in case He couldn’t hear me).

No Emergency Break

There is no emergency break. Should I jump? This cart is going to be on top of me eventually. Should I try to jump and clear it? (some faith, huh?). Thank God I have been taking my chlorophyll because my calcium levels are higher and I might not break my hip (yes, I did think this).

Who is going to clean the house when I break my hip? If I live through this I will never ever forget to clip the reins to the bit again. Pleeeeeease God help me! ​Comanche was going MUCH faster than we have ever, ever driven (I’m not sure how fast, it felt like 150 MPH but minis with a cart can only travel 15 to 20 MPH).

As I braced myself, we made a hard right turn, and the cart went up on one wheel. I implanted and locked my feet on the foot dash (grateful we chose the cart with the foot dash). We were running out of open area in a full gallop heading toward the second barn and the fence.

We would have to slam into the barn or the fence. I was trying to decide which was more appealing (like I had a choice) when Comanche stopped on a dime 3/4 inch from the fence (OK, maybe a foot).

I blinked, shakily got out of the cart, hooked up the reins, then got back in the cart (with my red face) drove over to my family to give the grandchildren the promised ride. I was immersed in thought about the spiritual lesson I had just learned. ​


Spiritual Object Lesson

Have you guessed yet? Isn’t ​​​​it incredibly obvious? God can’t control me if I don’t give Him the reins.

A runaway horse is an object lesson of us without God in control. James 4:3-4 says, “Now if we put the bits into the horses’ mouths so that they may obey us, we direct their entire body as well.”

Psalms 32:9 says “Be not like a horse or a mule, without understanding, which must be curbed with bit and bridle, or it will not stay near you. instead, look to Him to instruct “and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go” “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you” (v. 8). ​

We recently watched a movie about a border collie called Mist: The Tale of a Sheepdog Puppy. When Mist was first trained to work with the sheep, she didn’t do well and had to be leashed and taken back to the barn. As she matured and learned her master’s ways he no longer needed the leash; the master could whisper a command from across the field and the dog obeyed.

We make hundreds of decisions daily, sometimes obvious—right or wrong–according to God’s Word. Pray that you hear the tugs of the Holy Spirit and that you are so tuned into God and His Word (His ways) that you obey His commands when He whispers.

Watch The Tale of a Sheepdog Puppfree on YouTube.