A Reluctant Horse

If we serve God reluctantly there will be very little progress. I learned this lesson from a reluctant horse many years ago in Upper Volta (Burkina Faso). I had just arrived in the country and had no means of getting out to the villages to evangelize, except to walk five or six kilometers. One day the French official in town asked me how I got out to the villages. “I walked,” I said. “Can you ride a horse?” he asked. I told him I not only could ride a horse but could ride bareback, having grown up on a farm in Alberta. Whereupon he offered me his horse that he only used for sport. “Just ask my worker to put a bridle on him,” he said. I was overjoyed. Although the horse did not look sick it was suffering from sleeping sickness. To get him to go you had to use a switch. He would trot a little then stop. My arm got very tired from switching but finally we arrived in the village. When I finished meeting with the people and sharing the gospel, I got on the horse to return home. Suddenly it took off and galloped all the way back to town. I had to hang on for dear life. What a difference between going and coming. It was the same horse, with the same sleeping sickness, going the same distance. What made the difference? A negative attitude. He didn’t want to go to a village away from his green grass and water. Going home energized him. From that I learned a lesson. It is important to have a positive attitude. Only then will our work make progress.

(This story was taken from the book Chosen to Go, by Helen Krueger. Helen served with WEC in Côte d’Ivoire for 52 years before retiring. She passed on to her eternal reward in 2015.)

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