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High-Ho Trixie

Posted Friday, May 11, 2012, at 5:39 PM

She was just becoming comfortable in her new home. It seemed she was moved from place to place; people to people and it was beginning to bother her. No one seemed to want her. These people were okay, but she was not about to give them her heart until they proved themselves.

A new girl joined her. Maybe they could become friends and hang out. They had a lot in common. She moved toward her and as she did, her people herded her into the trailer which the new girl had just exited--another move. Didn't anyone want her?

When she came out of the trailer she was led by a couple of nice people into a large pasture. They told her she was a good girl and how pretty she was, but she didn't really believe them. There were lots of others out in the pasture--seven of them actually, and they were all bigger than her. It made her feel very small . . . and insecure.

The people lead her into the pasture and stood with her, petting her, reassuring her as they introduce her to the rest of the herd. They saddle up one of the big horses and tried to make her follow it, but she was afraid and didn't want to follow it. What if they kicked her, or chased her . . . after all she was less than half their size.

After a while, the people took off her lead rope and halter and let her run through the pasture. She liked the feel of the breeze in her mane. There were boys in this herd and they gave her admiring glances. The neighbor boy on the other side of the fence seemed to admire her also. Maybe this wouldn't be such a bad place to live.

She liked her people. They gave her attention. She got special treatment--petting, grooming, and one of them would sometime get on her back and they would take a short walk together. Usually they walked side by side with him holding a lead rope, but he always admired her beautiful cream mane and tail contrasting her sorrel coat.

Today he came out without any ropes. He talked to her softly and rubbed her neck. It felt so good. He gently placed his arms around her neck and rubbed the other side. He had something in his hands, but she paid it no mind. She trusted him.

A sound clicked near her ear. It was loud and snapped and startled her. She jerked. Her person still had his arms around her neck. The metal sound was closer. She was afraid it was going to get her. She wouldn't let it get her. She wouldn't let her get her person. What was she to do? She would fight it. She would kick it away.

She reared up . . . lifting her front hooves so she would kick at it, but she couldn't see it. It was near. She could hear it. Her person still had his arms around her neck. She would protect him from the danger. She thrust herself as high in the air as she could. Her front hooves pawing the air as she stood to her full height up on her hind legs--she would pummel the danger and protect her person as he clung to her. If he had been the Lone Ranger, she knew he would be yelling "High-ho, Silver, away."

However her man was no longer with her. His arms slipped from her neck and he fell to the ground. She barely missed landing on him as she rose on the hind legs once again, shaking her hooves at the danger lurking about before she ran off in circles . . . returning to see why he was laying on the ground. Was he okay? Did the mean thing get him?

The rest of the herd ran over to see what all the excitement was about. By this time he was getting to his feet and slowly moving toward the gate. She joined the herd for a run to the pond, pausing once to look over her shoulder at him. She really didn't understand humans.

He made his way out of the pasture to where his wife waited--trying to hide the smirk on her face. "I've been thrown by many a horse before . . . and I'll own it. But that is the first time I've been thrown by a horse I wasn't even riding! Blame tape measure snapped and spooked her. I just wanted to measure her to see how many hands tall that pony is. For a minute there I thought I was going to have to yell 'High-Ho Trixie, Away' as tall as she reared back."

We humans have no room to brag. We are just as flighty as a horse. The least little thing that we don't expect and we rear up, ready to fight or run. We try to throw God from our backs and sides as we run from danger--both real and imagined.

God, we know that you are in control, but it is so hard to trust that you are in control. When we run scared, no matter how hard we buck and kick, you are always with us . . . waiting for us to get our personal rodeo out of the way so that you can gently, lovingly guide us. Thanks for loving us . . . thanks for never abandoning us . . . and thanks for letting us think we are brave stallions even when we are just small ponies. So be it. Amen.

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From My Heart to Yours
Rayla Stewart Hogue
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Rayla Stewart Hogue is a native of Dexter. She is a wife, mother, and minister of the UCC (United Church of Christ). She seeks to recognize and embrace the unending hues of God's ethne and religion, and commits herself to living and expressing this inclusive diversity through Sacrament and the spoken, written, and sung Word of God.
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