A stiff breeze caught the horses’ manes and flicked their golden locks onto the young girl’s cheeks as she nuzzled her four-legged friends. Chelsea* had come a long way from her troubled childhood. Through the horses’ unconditional love she was beginning to heal from a young life marred by the unspeakable. She felt acceptance. She felt valued. And she was beginning to open her heart to the Savior’s love.
So was her mom.
After years of despair, Chelsea’s mom was finding the courage to parent her troubled daughter. She noted a twinkle returning to Chelsea’s playful glance. This beautiful miracle of God was taking place on a horse ranch nestled among the gentle hills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Rocking 777s Horseback Ministry provides a place for people to receive healing from life’s traumas through deep relationships with horses rescued from abuse.
The miracle in Chelsea’s life was evident.
And then the unthinkable happened.
During a Sunday visit, Chelsea’s mom walked to the barn to thank Dawn for helping her child. Chelsea continued to clean the neighboring stall while the ladies talked. Without warning, her mom said, “Dawn, something’s not right.” She reached out to Dawn and collapsed. Chelsea heard the commotion and raced to her mom’s side. There, in a heap within Dawn’s arms, lay her mother fighting for her last breath. Chelsea fell back against the wooden wall and slid down into the hay-strewn floor. Her eyes locked onto her mom’s and for a second, mother and daughter held each other’s gaze.
And then her mom was gone.
Her mom was gone.
Chelsea ran out of the barn and fell, weeping, into the grass. Dawn began to pray. She cried out to her Sovereign Lord for answers, for wisdom. Questions flung into the afternoon sky like dust from the galloping hoofs of her beloved horses.
And then an undeniable peace settled on Dawn.
Peering around the corner of the barn, Dawn found her young friend crumpled against the soggy earth. Without saying a word, she took Chelsea in her arms and rocked her. Swaying back and forth, she prayed over this young girl whose mom had just left this earth. Dawn didn’t have answers for Chelsea, but she did what she knew to do: she gave Chelsea Jesus.
Dawn cradled Chelsea in her arms and allowed the love of God to overflow through her and spill over into Chelsea’s broken heart. She became a vessel for God to work through. Although Dawn could not possibly meet the needs of this distraught child, she knew the One who could.
How often do we surrender to the taunting of our inadequacies and fail to embrace the opportunities God places before us? We don’t need to have all the answers. We only need to give them Jesus. His love will take care of the rest.
“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and the opening of the prison to those who are bound. ~ Isaiah 61:1, NKJV
*Name has been changed.
Rocking 777s Horseback Ministry was founded in 2009 by Dawn and Seth Emerson. It is located in Ashe County, NC along the spine of the Blue Ridge Mountains. This is a non-profit ministry, operated solely on faith. There is no charge for their services so that anyone with a need may come. The needs are great. Dawn & Seth have served cancer patients, troubled teens, abuse victims – all at no cost. The miracles of healing occur through God’s providence: as the horses are brought back to a place of trust from the dark shadows of extreme abuse, they develop a deep understanding and sensitivity to troubled souls. The horse/human connection is beautiful to watch and the results are amazing. If you would like to know more, please visit their website at www.rocking777shorsebackministry.org. Donations may be mailed to Dawn and Seth Emerson; Rocking 777s Horseback Ministry; PO Box 92; Fleetwood, NC 28628
Author’s Bio: Using the written word and the spoken words of her heart, Nan Jones assists fellow believers in discovering the essence of who God is in their darkest hour. Her devotional blog, Morning Glory, has become a place of community for Christians to find encouragement in God’s Word and comfort in His presence. Nan is also available to speak at conferences, bible studies, ladies’ retreats, mother/daughter teas – any event where two or more are gathered in His Name. No event is considered too small or too large. To read Nan’s devotions, please visit Morning Glory at http://morningglorylights.blogpspot.com. For information on speaking engagements, please visit Nan’s website at www.jubilantlight.com.