by Tammy Lawson

Often, we get asked, “Why horses. Why do you use horses in your program?” My answer is that God uses horses, in so may different ways, to teach us about Him and the relationship He longs to have with us. For instance:

Several years ago, when our youngest daughter was going into junior high school, we had just moved to Paso. Out to Heritage Ranch, out by Lake Nacimiento, to be exact. My husband and I assumed that Morgan would be starting school at Flamson Jr High, the largest and well known, at least to us, in the area. When we took her to orientation day, they told us that she was not in their district. What?! What other school could she possibly go to? I mean, she is “supposed to go this THIS one, right…because THIS one is the one that WE had planned for.

We drove over to the school district which is where they informed us that Morgan was supposed to go to Lillian Larsen, out in San Miguel. San Miguel? Where in the world is San Miguel and who ever heard of this Lillian Larsen?

So, we stood in the parking lot, doing what we, as people who think we know what is best, do best and that was to plot a way around the system. We made phone calls trying to find a way to make “our plan” happen. Sure enough, one of the calls to a local friend ended with, “Just use my address as your home address and Morgan can go to Flamson. No biggie. No-one will ever know”.

Those of you who have spent time with horses are probably familiar with what many horses do when they first walk into a round-pen. They run. Maybe some are taught to do that, maybe some do it out of fear, and maybe some do it because they don’t know what else to do, but in any case, most of the time, when they are running around and around, it’s almost impossible to get their attention. They are so sure that this is what you want them to do, even though you haven’t asked this of them, they blindly run and only when they get tired do they bother to slow down enough to even look at you.

Well, it was immediately after my friend said the words, “no-one will know”, that it hit both my husband and me…God will know. My husband looked at me and said, “are we done running in the round pen, cuz I’m tired”.

He was right. We stopped. Looked to God, who had been very patiently waiting for us to exhaust ourselves enough to finally look to Him, and He directed us. We both knew, in that moment, that we were supposed to drive out to Lilian Larsen, the school we had been fighting so hard against.

When we pulled into the parking lot of the tiny school in San Miguel, we knew that this was where Morgan was supposed to spend the next two years. What God did, in those two years, set the stage for Morgan’s future. Without the mentorship, love, and coaching that took place at that school, I am confident that she would not be the amazing person that she is today.

As for my husband and me, we learned that God always has the perfect plan and He always has the answer. We just have to trust Him enough to not immediately start running, losing sight of the fact that maybe, just maybe, if we stand still and actually listen, we may hear exactly what our next step should be.

Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.

Proverbs 16:9 “The mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.