My pony, Toby, that I bought from an Amish auction a year ago, encountered a bobcat this morning. He was very frightened, and ran around the field in a panic. I wanted to tell him the bobcat wasn't going to hurt him, but of course I don't speak pony language.
Ah, now you see. I wasn't totally honest with my click-bait title, was I? It wasn't THAT kind of bobcat at all.
This experience caused me to think in a couple different directions.
First, Toby was afraid of something he really didn't need to be. The machine Bobcat wasn't going to hurt him. I knew that, but he didn't. It was a neighbor moving three tons of wood pellets into my garage (enough to get me through another Ohio winter).
Toby couldn't understand, through my human words, that he was safe and didn't need to worry. And I couldn't become a pony, even briefly, to communicate that message to him. God, however, did something very similar, when Jesus took on human form to teach us how much our Father loves and cares for us.
Toby is a smart, little boy though. After he had tired himself out (didn't take long because I haven't been working him much), he decided to use his little pony brain to think things through. During the second Bobcat trip, Toby walked around, still a little nervous, watching it. By the last load, he just stood there. He even came closer so he could see better. :)
The second thing the Bobcat encounter reminded me of was how we can use partial truths in writing or the news media to slant things a certain way, to make people believe a distorted version of things.
When I said my pony encountered a bobcat, I was pretty certain most people would envision the feline version. Only later did I reveal the entire truth.
This tactic is used by unscrupulous religious leaders, who include parts of God's word, but then distort it. Often what they teach turns out to be the opposite of what the Bible actually says. The false teaching has a ring of truth to it. You have to know Scripture well to discern whether it really lines up with God's truth.
I feel a huge responsibility in the Sonrise Stable series to present Scriptural principles and lessons accurately. During the years that I was homeschooling my daughters, I had a lot of time to study the Bible. I spent about fifteen years devouring every commentary I could find. That knowledge, along with the experiences we had with our horses provided a strong foundation for the book series.
I hope to write more about Toby - such a good and cute little boy! And, I'd like to create some instructional horse videos which he will star in as well.