Before hopping on your horse, it is very important to make sure that you are ready. How can you be ready to ride a horse? Well if you have any intention on riding a horse, you better make sure you have some kind of connection with her. This connection can come from years of hanging out together, or from simply spending some very intentional time together prior to riding. This usually means grooming, groundwork, etc. You cannot ride a horse whose spirit is intact without first making a connection, trust me.
Now if you have a connection with the horse you intend to ride, but your mind is elsewhere, you better go elsewhere and do something else. Horses and humans (ideally) share a beautiful connection while riding when their minds are in sync. A rider with an exceptional connection to their horse can simply look in the direction that they want to go and their horse will act accordingly. If your head isn’t in the game, you could find yourself scraped off, on the ground, or headed in a direction you did not want to go.
Confidence. I’ll tell you what, whether you have years of riding experience under your belt, or you’ve never ridden a horse before in your life, confidence will get you everywhere. Now please don’t get confidence confused with arrogance. Remember, “Pride goeth before destruction, and a haughty spirit before the fall.” (Proverbs 16:18-19). Horses are sensitive. If you have made it as far as making a connection with the horse and getting on their back, confidence, or, faith is what it all comes down to. Faith will bring you over mountains and through the woods with exhilarating joy. Fear, however, might scare the horse, with you landing in a painful place.
Let’s not forget about protection. Horses can be unpredictable and it is always best to hope for the best but plan for the worst. This means armor up! A helmet can be the difference between life and death, or worse, paralysis. Now if you happen to have a bow and arrow, that’s just icing on the cake, but not always necessary.
Finally, you must know how to read a horse. There are many signs of anxiety, ease, and pissed off pony that you need to be able to look out for. A good rider feels into the emotion of their horse. Ears forward, and mouth chewing? Happy horse. Ears pinned and tail swishing? Pissed off pony. Backing up and head tense? Your horse is in distress and something is seriously freaking her out. Now it could simply be a squirrel or a plastic bag, but your horse being scared is the real problem.
So what do you do if your horse is freaking out? Well, if you have a connection with your horse, you can assure them that everything is fine. If you are confident, your horse will believe you and if you are wearing a helmet, your head will have protection incase of a fall. Bow and arrow? You can go after the bad guy!
I believe that our relationship with horses is similar to our relationship with the Lord. If you have a good connection with your Savior, are not distracted by the cares of the world, have faith that can move mountains, are daily putting on the full armor of God and are sensitive to the promptings of the Holy Spirit you my friend, are in for the ride of your life! Jesus said that He is coming soon (Revelation 22:12). Are you prepared?