There were subtle differences in the young gelding, at first. He was a little less willing to move forward, a bit more anxious to rush toward home. He began to flip his head at times, for no apparent reason. Then came the spooks, the unexpected flights up and around. I checked saddle and bit fit, ascertained there were no underlying pain or soundness problems. After ruling out traditional sources of trouble, I decided he was testing me, as ‘equine teens’ are wont to do. He just required a firmer hand.
In spite of my efforts, he seemed to become worse each time we left the barn. One day as we rode the trail we commonly worked on, he was even more tense than usual. I deliberately took long, calming deep breaths, kept him walking forward. Suddenly there was a loud cracking noise, off to our left. The horse violently reared, ducked, whirled, and ran a short ways off–the last part without me. I found myself crawling along on the ground, silently cursing this stubborn, willful young horse and blindly feeling around for the glasses that had been flung from my face. They had to lay somewhere in the deep brush at the side of the trail.
I not only couldn’t find my glasses, but soon realized that might be the least of my worries. It seemed my right leg had been badly injured in the fall–perhaps, I thought, even broken. I stood lopsided on the trail, fighting back tears. I knew I needed to gather up my horse and head back down the hill toward home. Somehow, I managed to do both.
As I neared home my husband saw me limping badly, leaning hard on my horse, and rushed to give me a hand. After helping me into the house and unsaddling the gelding, he headed back up the trail on foot to see if he might find my glasses. An hour or so later he was back home. He had discovered my glasses–as well as the explanation for the horse’s behavior. There was, he informed me, a trail of badly trampled berry bushes, and fresh bear tracks, all over the area that we had been riding every day. If I had been observing–and properly interpreting–the signs all around me, this accident could easily have been avoided.
Instead, I’d relied only upon what I thought I knew to be true. I’d done all the ‘right’ things, responded to each circumstance in all the ‘right’ ways–and all my head knowledge had totally blinded me to the real problem. I should have simply paid closer attention to all that was going on around me. . .read the signs correctly. . .stopped blaming, and started really listening. I’d used knowledge, when I’d needed discernment.
Similarly, we can get into trouble by relying upon what we think we know, rather than being sensitive to all that God would reveal to us through the circumstances He places in our lives. Superstitious? Not at all! Is God not sovereign? The written word is composed of and by Wisdom, yet Wisdom is not confined to the pages of any book. Rather, it abides in an omnipotent God Who reigns over every detail of our lives, allows every circumstance, who would reveal Himself to us in every turn of events.
Oh, that we might have eyes to see!
Job 33:13 Why dost thou strive against him? for he giveth not account of any of his matters. 14 For God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man perceiveth it not.
Prov. 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
Proverbs 1:20 Wisdom cries aloud outside; she gives her voice in the square; 21 she calls at the head of gathering places; in the opening of the gates, in the city she utters her words: 22 How long will you love to be simple, you simple ones? And will scorners desire scorn for themselves? And will fools hate knowledge? 23 Turn back at my warning; behold, I will pour out my Spirit to you; I will make my words known to you.