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Feb 14

CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF HOPE

2012-05-20_18-27-57_246The sun had tried to battle the rain clouds most of the day.........but it seemed the dreary darkness was winning....and it was obvious that we would have to do sessions with our Exodus kids inside the big barn.  Josh and I made a plan to focus on ground work.......how to correct a horse while keeping our emotions in control..........how to ask with quietness and kindness.......how to build a relationship with the horse based on respect and trust....

Our first little one arrived early for the first session.....after asking how her day was, she immediately let me know that she had had a bad week.   "What went wrong, Lil One?........."I kicked and hit my sister.....alot"...........This sweet little seven year old had the face of an angel......beautiful blue eyes illuminated her tiny face framed with golden curls.....but her little heart was always full of rage and anger.....such a contradiction to that sweet demeanor.....I wondered what that innocent child had seen or heard to have all that anger......but there was progress!  Never before had she been quick to own her struggles and failures with us....her confession was huge!!!!!  How amazing God is that we would spend the session working on self control.....and controlling our emotions.  After she was done, she and I talked about her and I praying every day this week for God to enable her to control her emotions and her anger.........and she agreed to pray everytime she would feel like she wanted to kick or hit someone.  A big hug and she was on her way home with her foster family to battle her demons..........with a God who knows her and loves her!

 

A beautiful young lady in our second session was back......she had been gone for several weeks..........we welcomed her back with hugs..........but she was downcast.   Her eyes used to sparkle when she walked into the barn and greeted all of us.  That was gone.  Turns out she had been gone because she had taken off with a young parolee......and now he had broken her heart.  Apparently he is a great guy........he had just cheated on her.   Hmmmmmmmm......so we chatted......I told her that she was a precious most favored daughter of the God who made the universe........and then we began to make a list of all her attributes.   At first she was dubious but the more we talked a small glimmer came back into her eyes!  "Christ died for you........you are priceless........make sure that any young man who takes up your time and your heart is worthy of you......."  She smiled as she left.....and she wasnt looking down.

I watched another young man in the second session work with Mak on the ground, controlling his feet with the lightest of touch.  He was so intent as Josh gave explanation and then instruction......and he executed the excercises as well as any seasoned horseman.  No chatting or bantering with the other kids......he was determined to be the best he could be.  Then it came time to practice roping the dummy cow.....and he gave up.  "I cant do it....I cant do it .....it's too hard......just forget it."  "We don't arrive at greatness giving up........come on....try it again."  This was a young man who comes from a home where NO ONE is functioning......everyone has given up in their own way.....taken another route....and he was the one who had suffered the consequences.  He had given up at school........in relationships.............in all areas of his life.......and he was angry and shut down because he felt like a loser and a failure....PLEASE dont give up here, kid!  By the end of the hour, he was spinning his rope like a pro.......and his whole demeanor was different........he had pushed through........and he could do it!!!!!!!  And this junior high boy,,,who was sullen and full of despair.... jogged through the rain to his truck to leave...stopped....turned around........and shouted "I love you Miss Ginger".

The last session, another junior high boy came just to help out.  He was not interested in riding but his family and youth pastor thought he would benefit from helping around the farm.  He was a man of NO words......and only a rare smile.  I let him clean tack since it was raining with two girls from the second session..........and no conversation came out of the tack room.....no surprise there! Lord, please give us a  break through with him.....would he ever open up to us.  He helped me finish feeding in the gator and as I drove him to his truck he asked "how many days do you do this?"......."three"..............."can I come all three?"............................"sure!!"....................."and I think I might start riding".....

Sometimes, as we serve our Lord.....as we battle the darkness that haunts these precious children........we might feel like we are losing........but God is so very, very faithful.  We cherish days like this when we are privileged enough to see God changing hearts through our volunteers and our horses.  We are allowed to witness what unconditional love and acceptance can do in the life of a broken child when we imitate our Savior in our words and our deeds and we are renewed and inspired to persevere........even in the storms......to serve our King.........by loving these kids!!!!

 

 

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