Recently my mom, Jules, has begun a new form of liberty training with our horses, utilizing a raised square object that we call a mark. Out of our four horses, Pepper might be considered our most mischievous and stubborn horse. However, he is the only one of our horses who willingly, and readily walks right up onto the mark, whenever we ask, without a second thought. Any chance to step up onto his precious mark is happily taken by Pepper, in fact, my mom has actually begun rewarding him with the mark! The mark is Pepper’s happy place. It is the only place where we can get him to stand still enough to get a shot. The mark is where Pepper finds peace. When on the mark, Pepper can fearlessly take on the world and all of its sharp edges.
My mom and i recently had the privilege of chatting with Christian author and renowned horsewoman, Lynn Baber. My mom told Lynn about Pepper’s remarkable propensity for the mark and asked her where she should go next with his training. We were thinking more along the lines of making the mark taller, or getting him to put all of his feet on one mark, but Lynn’s advice was like a breath of fresh air. She told my mom that she needed to become the mark. My mom needed to become Pepper’s peaceful place, and in doing so, Pepper would do anything for her. What an interesting new way for us to connect our work with our horses to our relationship with God.
The Greek word for sin in the Bible can literally be translated to “to miss the mark”. If by sinning, we miss the mark, then what happens when we don’t? What peace are we missing out on when we miss the mark? With both feet firmly planted, what could be accomplished in and through us with our Heavenly Father and His coming kingdom?