The Living of God’s Word
Interrupting scripture is tricky. Some concepts we
understand. But others make us ask, “How can this apply to the
circumstances I’m facing?” For example Ephesians 5:15-21 teaches us to
walk wisely, avoid undesirable influences, make the most of our time,
discern the will of God, be filled with the spirit, give thanks in all
things, and submit to one another in the fear of God. It’s that last
part that sends shivers up our spine—submitting. We fear of someone
else controlling us. But the Bible defines submission as a military
term—willingly to arrange oneself under another—not “unthinking”
We make plans and choices and think what we are doing is
right. Sometimes, however, these innocent plans sideswipe us and we’re
laid back on our heels wondering, “What happened?” Through the movie,
The Horse Whisper, I will illustrate how God’s word applies outside of
the Christian academia-where most of us live.
In the movie a young girl and her friend plan an early morning horse
ride. It’s a beautiful, frosty day. All goes well until they make an
unwise choice to go up a steep, icy bank, resulting in a tragic
accident. The horse is mutilated beyond recognition. The star of the
show loses her friend and her leg, and is also mutilated mentally.
Her mother won’t put the horse down. When the horse can travel, she
takes these two broken, untrusting creatures, out west to a man with a
mysterious talent – talking to horses.
The mysterious man, Robert Redford, watches and observes them. He
knows there isn’t much time before they both go under. Does he realize
he’ll follow the instructions in Ephesians 5? I don’t think so. But
gradually Redford’s unique gift works wonders with the girl’s heart
and the horse’s spirit.
With us too, the Lord places people in our path to help transform us.
Here, Redford is the one the Lord used. He creates an atmosphere of
hope that there is still a life to live. The girl and the horse take
the first step—they chose to listen. The second step is trusting this
unusual man. Their final hurdle is submitting—willing to place them
self under his authority for wellness.
Did Redford consciously say, “Lo, I come to do Thy will, O God
(Hebrews 10: 9)?” No, but God used him for His purpose: to bring life
back to two of His dying creations.
Let’s walk through Ephesians 5: the girls made unwise choices; the
mother listened to her heart instead of to destructive influences;
Redford understood time was a premium; He didn’t shy away from using
the filling of his gift; and finally, the horse and girl voluntarily
submit, and finally the praise of healing.
Is this a stretch? Perhaps. But it’s real. Be encouraged. As we place
ourselves under God’s protection, He rewards our submitting with His
outpouring love that meets us in our common, daily lives.