When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise—in God I trust and am not afraid Psalm 53:3-4 (NIV)
In between getting ready for Guatemala and shifting my stuff in my luggage over and over again to try and get each bag under 50 pounds, I wanted to see if Trucker would load in my new trailer. Getting a horse into the trailer is not an easy task. Try stuffing 1,000 pounds of muscle into a closet sometime. Compound that with the fact that a horse’s eyesight is not that great. A mud puddle looks like a lake to them. A small dip in the trail like the Grand Canyon. And a trailer like a deep, dark cave filled with lions and tigers and bears. I knew it might not be easy to get him in the new trailer. It is different from Andrea’s. He would be required to go in face first and step up about six inches to do it. So, I anticipated some time in getting him in. But, even knowing all that, I was surprised at how afraid he was of the trailer. His ears went back, he quickened his breathing and started snorting. When horses snort, they are sniffing for danger as well as saying, “I’m afraid.” If he could have spoken in English, I think he would have said, “Momma, what’s this can? Where did it come from? I smell strange horses. Where did they go? Did this can eat them? I don’t want to go in there. Momma, I’m afraid!” But, all I heard was snort, snort, snort from a wild eyed horse with the brakes on. Gradually, I coaxed him forward using cues I learned from my horse trainer. Every step, I let him rest and know that nothing bad would happen. I talked to him and told him what a good boy he was and there was nothing to be afraid of. Gradually, he relaxed, but I noticed that he was always turning his head slightly to the side so he could see me. Horses have no peripheral vision, and I was in his blind spot. He was looking at me for reassurance. I was stunned to realize even in this terribly scary situation, he trusted me completely. I moved to a place where he could see me better and his large brown eyes continued to make contact with mine. “It’s okay, little boy. I will keep you safe,” I said. And then, he surprised me by putting one foot into the trailer and then, another. Soon, he was all the way inside, munching on the pile of hay I had placed there. I let him stand for a few minutes, then, urged him to back out again. We repeated entering and exiting the trailer ten more times. In less than thirty minutes he had conquered his fears and was loading like the trailer had been ours forever. Tomorrow I leave for Guatemala. I am also fully loaded with 50 pounds of school supplies, 50 pounds of diapers, gloves and baby wipes and 25 pounds of my own clothes. I will remember this lesson that Trucker taught me today and keep my eyes on my Master. When all I see is Him, I will not be afraid.