But I digress, this is about one of the colts I rode for Sam. We had a couple that looked like Bob, and being the creative minded guys that we were….we called them Bad Bob and Mad Bob. The names had more to do with their temperaments than anything else. Bad Bob was a nasty bucker, again the creative name. Mad Bob, well you guessed it….he was an angry horse!
When I first started him he tried to run me down. He was mad at the world from the beginning. Looking back I think this anger had more to do with the horseman and less to do with the horse. But, I forced him to progress along and he got to the point that he quit trying to run me down. I saddled him on the second day (there was never much groundwork, for me, back then.) and hoped he would pitch just a little. Now most two years olds don’t have the power to buck hard, they tend to out quick you. Mad Bob was no exception, he was not very big….but he was pretty quick. I also knew there was a possibility that he could come back after me if he bucked me off, I didn’t think he would….but I was taking no chances.
I stepped aboard rather quickly and turned his head loose. He just stood there….I felt like I was sitting on a keg of dynamite. His muscles were as tight as a fiddle string. So I started swatting him on the hiney, trying to get him to make any sort of move. He finally blew…pitching and squalling. He sorta surprised me when he finally made the first jump, so it took me a couple of jumps to gather myself back up and pull him into a circle. He pitched in a circle for a little and eventually stopped. So I let him loose again…bam…again with the pitchin’. I spent most of an hour with this process…turn him loose, he would buck a couple of jumps and I would pull him in a circle. Eventually he tired, but then by that time so was I! I couldn’t wait for the next couple of days…one more in the round pen….next one in the pasture….
When we started him on cows, he was like an alligator. Biting at the cows anytime they got close to him. I think he actually liked the cow work, but it was more about where he could make them go (he wanted to dominate them) and less about holding them out of the herd. He turned into a pretty nice pony, but that anger was always just under the surface. You never knew if he was going to blow up or not.
Just like I was asking Mad Bob to do something he was fearful of doing, God will ask you to step outside your comfort zone. The difference is that God will continue to encourage you to make that step, where I just forced ol’ Mad Bob to bend to my will. Starting colts is about timing, knowing when to advance to that next step. We often miss time the next step and a horse is created with that “you never know when he was going to blow up” statement tied to him. He has no foundation to fall back on. God’s timing is perfect; He never pushes you into something you’re not ready for. You always have a foundation to fall back on, the love of Christ and God’s written word.
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you. Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding but must be controlled by the bit and bridle or they will not come to you. Many are the woes of the wicked, but the Lord’s unfailing love surrounds the man who trusts in him.