I’ve heard of people who work with horses who have the particular gift of being able to speak to the animals to calm them, to tender them, to tame them when all else fails. These individuals are called horse whisperers…. whisperers who use gentle persuasion, never-ending patience, and soft words. They just seem to know what to do when confronted with a wild stallion – one that is out there running around, jumping fences, knocking down walls, and bucking off anyone who makes the mistake of trying to ride or even come near them. These are the brutes, the ones that cannot be managed, the ones filled with fury and anger, the ones that will be written off and possibly destroyed if the whisperer cannot settle them down.
From the start, the horse is aware of the whisperer, but he will not be cowed, so he ignores him. The horse does everything in its power to resist the soft gentle voice of the one who stands firm in the face of the horse’s fury, the one who looks him straight in the eye and knows him, sees him, all of it – the pain, the anger, the tremendous force of pure power wrapped in a couple thousand pounds of horse flesh – a horse that wants nothing at all to do with that individual who waits patiently filled with his own knowing strength holding onto the bridle and the reins ready for the horse to yield. Ultimately, the horse will be spent, exhausted, tired of the burden, overcome and lost with no focus or direction and will finally lower his head meekly – not in weakness – but in strength – now controlled strength – and the horse will seek the gentle knowing hands of the whisperer.
I think we are very much like these wild horses – full of our own willfulness, sure of our own pride, absolutely knowing that we don’t need this whisperer, this Son of God, to rein us in. We are going to run free no matter what – knock down some fences of our own – do what feels good. After all, we are not really hurting anybody, so what if our family or friends get a little too close when we’re shaking out our oats running free and unhindered; we’re just being who we think we are meant to be. And, aren’t most of us good people anyway although we might admit that there are times we might do a little cheating or lying or stealing as part of our running free and doing it our way? After all, who’s to know if we keep it on the downlow?
But we know and we see Him there and we know that He knows. So we run, we jump fences, we race away miles away…and tell ourselves if we just run fast enough and far enough, he won’t see me anymore. But he’s there and he is not chasing us at all….he just waits and whispers in that still soft voice, “Stop running, it’s okay, I know you and I have nothing but love for you. I’m not here to condemn you, I’m here to help.”
But we are not going to have anything to do with that….don’t need any help…..got it all inside me….can handle anything…..not about to be fooled by all those old stories and Bible verses…after all this is 2020…..just something weak people believe in….God is not real. But He is and you know it; He is still right there beside you…right there no matter how far you run; and, if you stop to listen, you can hear that gentle voice. “Stop running, my child, for you grow weary and your burdens are heavy. Come, I can ease those burdens and you will find that my yoke is easy. I see you as you are and I know you….I knew you in your mother’s womb and witnessed the quickening when your heart had its first beat……I have always known you; I have known you from the foundations of the universe. And, I love you, all of you, even the parts you try to hide. Why else would I be here…beckoning? Come, I will show you the way, the only way, for I am the way, the truth, and the light. Give all your cares to me and I will give you a peace that only God can give.”
Indeed, only a single step is needed – once you take that step and turn your face in his direction, He will be there wrapping the reins of His love all around you, giving you rest, setting you on the path to a freedom you never could have imagined possible before you met this whisperer of souls.
“Therefore, humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him for He cares for you.” 1Peter 5:6-7
(This piece was first published as a devotional in Grace Through Faith Devotionals on Facebook in 2019)