Stephen Bly Down A Western Trail

How To Sack A Horse

August 11, 2023 Stephen Bly
Stephen Bly Down A Western Trail
How To Sack A Horse
Show Notes Transcript

WESTERN WISDOM "How To Sack A Horse" audio podcast by award-winning western author Stephen Bly. Sponsored by Legacy Series. 
"Trainer Sacked Her Horse" blog post article found here:
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Stephen Bly
Circa 1996 

Annie’s a friend of mine from Pennsylvania. She’s a high school senior who has been writing to me for years. As a pretty good horse trainer, she keeps me informed on all her current projects.

“I sacked a horse last Tuesday and expect to be in the paint’s saddle by the weekend,” Annie wrote. 

She’s training a paint gelding she’s for a lady down the road and she’s trying to keep him from getting spooked at every little object along the trail. So, she took a big white plastic sack, like the kind oats come in these days, and she shook it at him. She snapped it at his rump, tied it on the back of his neck, and let him drag it by the tail all around the corral for several days. Now he’s so bored of the thing he doesn’t give it a second thought. 

A Horse’s Fears 

Horses jump because they’re afraid. At first, that sack looked mighty scary. You can’t find an environment that doesn’t possess some frightening looking things. But you can help a horse understand that certain foreign objects won’t hurt them. 

Applied to Spiritual Enemies 

The same principle applies to the spiritual world too. Some real enemies exist out there. However, not every stranger or unexpected activity, not every foreign object or blast of headline news, nor every conspiracy theory or unfriendly neighbor amounts to an enemy out to destroy you.  

What you need is what the Bible calls discernment.  

Paul prays that the believers of Philippi receiving his letter may “Be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ” (Philippians 1:10). 

Spiritual discernment supplies the God-given gift of seeing things from the Lord’s point of view.

Sacking a Horse Lessons 

When you sack a horse, you’re not trying to teach him to fear nothing. You hope he’ll still shy6 away from a rattlesnake or a grizzly bear. But you want him to see shadows, sticks, squirrels, aluminum cans, white sacks, and Big Mac wrappers as harmless objects, just like you do. 

If you seem to be shoved into a spiritual corral and scary looking situations and apparitions wave all around you, consider you’re being sacked, in order to toughen you up and teach you discernment.