Mon, 07/16/2012 - 18:19
Halleluia! Thank you Lord SPRING is finally here!!! Once again we had a great time at the Mid West Horse Fair this last April! All of us really enjoyed Crystal Lyons for Cowboy Church!!! We all went to a round pen demonstration with Ray Ainsworth that fits in the new Unit we just started. His demo was a perfect fit, we watched how his body language communicated to a young filly and we saw her body language communicate her submission.
Our Club just started the COMMUNICATION & CUES Unit. We have already learned about how horses communicate with each other in the herd using their body language (the head, eye, neck, tail, legs and body tension). We discussed how God made horses to live in herds with a herd hierarchy to keep them fed and safe; there is the stallion, the boss mare and each horse has a position within the herd. Even a group of domesticated horses in a pasture have a hierarchy or pecking order from the alpha (boss) mare or gelding to the beta horse at the bottom. Then we talked about how a horse reads our body language and how we need to use the body language of a confident leader. To fulfill PROJECT 2 we are teaching the girls how to pay attention to what they are communicating to the horse they lead and ride. We are teaching them about natural horsemanship in the roung pen. Round penning a horse is NOT running a horse until its tired enough to ride and it is not a "macho" control thing. It is listening to a horse's communication as you speak to him with your body language that you are the boss mare in this herd of two. A horse is actually more comfortable knowing who is in charge and where he fits in the herd. In a herd whoever controls the feet, the food and the space is in charge, so that is what a person does in the round pen. After seeing several round pen demonstrations each girl will learn to do it herself. The girl has a training stick to turn the horse left and right as she watches to see if the horse's inside ear is turned toward her, is the horse moving in the direction she has chosen, if the horse turns she is to turn him back, she doesn't let him eat any grass around the edges or let him charge toward her in any way. She is looking for the horse to show he is ready to submit to her leadership by cooperative turns, a lower neck, and licking with his mouth. The aim is to achieve "join-up," that is when the horse chooses to join up her as the leader. It is a special feeling when a horse joins up and follows you around the round pen with no rope attached.
We apply this to how the Lord Jesus wants to be our leader, we may toss our heads, look away at other things we think are more important, even as Believers we don't keep our ear tuned in to what our Master desires. The Holy Spirit works with us and draws us so we will choose to trust and follow the Lord, to "join-up" with Him. Still, at times we go off on our own wrong path, but God brings us back to the "Round pen" to bring about a change of attitude and guides us on to the best path for our life to fulfil our God-designed purpose. How much it delights the Lord when we choose to trust Him with our whole heart and life!
In this Unit the girls are memorizing two verses in the book of John. They will read John and Numbers in the Bible. In the Devotions we will learn how God desires to commune with the people He created in the Old Testiment times on to right now. We will learn that prayer is simply conversations with God; thanking, praising, sharing our hearts and lives with Him and making requests for others and ourself. There is a special study of the many things the Holy Spirit does for us and in us too.
May you all give your heart and life to the Lord Jesus, He is the best Master to follow.
WINTER NEWS FROM THE WHITEWATER CLUB #1!
Winter seems to be here to stay. The first week of March and its 5 degrees and a snow storm expected! Please Spring come soon!!!
CHC Inc. article by Noelle Larson; CHC Inc. graduate alumni and co-leader.
Greetings fellow horse-lovers! It is my privilege to write to you for the first time, on behalf of the Whitewater Christian Horse-Lover's Club Inc. I
have been personally involved with CHC since it's conception in year 2000, first as a member and later as a junior leader. Although my college experience brought me to the East Coast for a few years, I have been blessed to serve with the group again upon my return to Wisconsin. What a great experience it has been!
This past December, the Whitewater CHC had a great time finishing up their Creation Unit and studying how the fossil record supports the history
of God's creation of the world found in the book of Genesis. We participated in a demonstration of Equine Massage and I think that our horses have greatly appreciated a few of our new skills! The girls also had a lot of fun at our Christmas Sleepover. It is a big deal for some of them to take responsibility for things like preparing food, setting up a "sustainable sleeping arrangement," and helping to feed the horses in the morning. Although it definitely felt pretty chilly (5° or so), they all did a great job helping out and I think it was good for them to get more involved in the care of the horses they love. Later that morning the girls had lots of fun riding bareback and practicing emergency dismounts in the snow! See the pictures.
Since the start of the New Year, our CHC club has been working on the Wisdom Unit and studying why the things God has to say about different subjects really matters as well as how to study and search for answers in the Bible. The girls are learning how to use an exhaustive concordance as well as modern
technologies, such as Internet Bible study tools, to learn the original Hebrew or Greek words used, their full
meaning, and even how to pronounce them. The girls are currently reading through the book of Proverbs and marking a "W" next to any verses mentioning wisdom or wise and an "F" next to any verses mentioning folly or fool. Proverbs really has much to say about wise and foolish living! The girls are also working hard at memorizing *2 Timothy 2:15*, "Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth." NKJV
On a personal note, I would like to tell you about how my involvement and leadership development in CHC helped prepare me for success in college as well as leadership in my campus Christian group. Tangibly speaking, several of the Bible study skills, Bible history, and even several of the verses that I learned in CHC helped me stay grounded as I adjusted to living on my own in a very liberal environment. If I had questions about God's viewpoint on certain subjects, I felt equipped to know how to find it and start applying it to my life. These skills became especially relevant for me when I started leading a women's Bible study with one of my peers. Our group members were women with real lives and sometimes very difficult questions about morality, scripture, lifestyle issues, and how to rest in God's peace in the midst of our turmoil. On several occasions, my co-leader and I searched the scriptures together in search of many of these answers and helped our group members hide God's Word in their hearts.
Less tangibly, but no less powerfully, I truly believe that God used CHC to help shape my character development and teach me to love the presence of God. As a growing horsewoman, I found going on long rides to be a very rewarding way for me to engage with God's creation and talk with Him about things in my life. I
learned that God really does desire good for me, and just like I have to train and discipline my horse for his own safety and wellbeing, God sometimes has to discipline me, too. When I have my horse do a hip-over, or pause before walking through the arena gate, it isn't because I am angry with him or desire harm for him; it's because I love him and need his attitude to be in calm submission before I'm ready to go out on the trails. Knowing that God often interacts with us in that way, too, has really helped me be at peace in the midst of difficult or frustrating moments that probably feel a lot like a "hip-over" does to my horse. I have learned that I don't have to understand "why" things happen the way they do because I can trust the heart of the One who sustains and directs my life through the power of the Holy Spirit. I believe that this message is the heartbeat of Christian Horse-Lover's Club Inc. and has the power to transform people's lives, just as it has transformed my own.I would like to share one of my favorite verses with you. It describes the how the Holy Spirit transforms and renews our minds, empowering us with the ability to understand God's will in our lives. My life may feel stressed, or even "chaotic," at times, but I can always rest assured knowing that God's will for me is good, pleasing, and perfect. That is a promise I can hold on to! *Romans 12: 1-2* "Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God--this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve whatGod's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will." NIV(R)
A note from Kim: Noelle is a great example of how CHC Inc. helps to disciple Christians. She has been a huge help this past year and we all greatly appreciate her! Kim
SUMMER and AUTUMN of 2013
This summer went so fast and full of CHC fun. This summer I did two CHClubs, our regular girls CHClub did the TRANSITIONS Unit and I also did a boys CHClub and we did the RIDING CUES Unit. I have worked with girls for over 25 years so doing a boys club was a big step in faith. I have been pleasantly surprised at this great group of boys, they are quiet, respectful, helpful and follow along in the Devotions quite well. The verse they memorized was perfect for these young men. Psalm 119:9-11 “How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to Your Word. I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from Your commands. I have hidden Your Word in my heart that I might not sin against You.” NIV®
In the RIDING CUES Unit Devotions we learned about the correct riding position and about a Believer's position in Christ. As we studied th different riding cues, the Devotions were topical Bible studies that correlated with the cues, such as; balance and the use of our seat with how a Believer needs to search the Scriptures to find God's balanced viewpoint, the use of our leg and feet cues with many of the Proverbs that were about where our feet should and shouldn't go and as we discussed the use of our hands holding the reins, we studied the hand of God. We talked of how important it is for a rider to look where you plan to go, then we discussed how Believers need to fix our eyes on Jesus.
They also memorized Hebrews 12:2 “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him, endured the cross, scorning its shame and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”NIV®
I was reminded of the difference between teaching a girls club and a boys club when we were discussing Western reining; I asked, “Why would a cowboy need one hand free?” They all chimed in “To shoot his gun!!!” After we all had a good laugh I asked again, “Why would a COWboy need one hand free?” Then several boys gave the answer I was looking for; “to rope a cow!”
Most of the boys came to the camp out by the water falls. We cooked our brats and hotdogs over the campfire and introduced them to campfire cooked banana boats. Mr. & Mrs. H., my husband Robin and Chris T. all helped to make the camp out successful. The boys had lots of time to practice riding a pattern at their level using all the correct riding cues and seated in the proper position. We even took time to ride in the morning so I could check off their riding requirements. Since summer went by so fast we had one meeting start extra early so we could finish more Devotions and then we had a fun time playing some games on the horses. The boys have really worked hard to complete their Bible reading too! They read Luke, Romans and 1 & 2 Thessalonians. The last project is to choose a Bible study topic and look up verses to find a balanced view point and write a summary of what they find.
What I really enjoy seeing in both CHC Inc. clubs is how each new rider starts out nervously hunched over with a death grip on the saddle horn and legs curled up – which changes to– riding in the correct position, head up, heels down, hands low and their confidence shining through by the end of summer. Just as it is great to see their soul's get filled with the Word of God and answer their sincere questions about the Lord and what pleases Him. Like, the Lord delights in those who revere Him and puts their hope in His unfailing love.
Girls CHCLUB: We had a good size club doing the TRANSITIONS Unit this summer. The Girls learned the definition of what a transition is: a period of change from one condition or place to another. The devotions covered how life is full of many types of change that everyone goes through; from seasons of change to small daily changes to big changes to sudden dramatic events that completely change the direction of your life. To often when sudden or difficult change happens people react with out-of-control emotions. We discussed what the Bible says about how to go through transitions; to trust in the Lord, to stay peaceful and stable in the transitions.
T do this first , we need to have a close connection with Jesus by spending time in prayer, building a close relationship with Him. Second, to have correct knowledge and thinking from the Word of God to help you learn what the Bible says about your type of situation (you can't use what you don't know!). To learn to think as the Scriptures direct you to think, not according to your feelings or think what ever falls into your mind. Put these together for correct living, that is, to live a godly life. One of our memory verses gives us clear direction and a wonderful promise to help us to stay in peace: Philippians 4:6-7 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” NIV® This verse not only tells us what not to do; do not be anxious, but also tells us what to do; pray, present your requests, to be thankful, then it promises that the peace of God will guard your heart and mind. In another memory verse the LORD also promises to give you peace: 2 Thessalonians 3:16 “Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you.”NIV®
The horse activities in the Transition Unit are about how to improve ones riding skills by focusing on making smooth transitions from one gait to another. They learned to have a close connection with the horse; moving with good rhythm, balance and a go-with-the-flow motion matching the horse's movement by doing some lunge-line exercises. To be a better rider we also discussed how important it is to learn correct knowledge and thinking. We taught them how to use pre-cues to make smoother transitions. We examined the order in which a horse puts his feet down; at the walk, trot and canter. Then the riders learned to feel how their hip lifts on one side when the horse's back leg pushes off and their hip drops when the horse's hind leg is reaching under them. They applied what they learned to practice correct riding. Each rider practiced a riding pattern that fit their abilities.
The girls also had a nice camp out here at the Hidden Falls Ranch by the waterfall. The camp out gave the girls extra time to practice riding a pattern at their skill level which included several transitions. The third Project the girls did was learn a song that spoke of staying in peace and trusting God in all circumstances. They are reading the book of Jeremiah and Lamentations. These two books are about Israel in a major time of transition, because of their continual idol worship and rebellion against God, Jeremiah warns them of impending discipline from the Lord. Babylon would conquer Israel. Our devotions gave an overview of Jeremiah’s message and we talked about back-sliding; what it is, how it can happen to any Believer and how the Holy Spirit draws them back to Him.
Sept. Awards Ceremony: We had our biggest ever Awards Ceremony ever in September for we had both the girls and boys CHClubs demonstrate to their families and friends what they learned this last summer. Each rider did a pattern they have practiced. It was a bit windy, but everything went well. It is great to see them handling the horses, putting into action what they have learned and even better to hear them confidently reciting Scriptures and joyfully receiving their awards for what they have accomplished. I did an overview of the Units each club completed. Then we had a big potluch/cookout and visited with everyone. The LORD has blessed this summer and we are thankful!
Spring 2013 What a Wisconsin winter, one week goes from almost 50' to 9' within 2 days and it seems like spring has refused to come to Wisconsin at all!
Our CHClub is working on the Character of God Unit. In this Unit we are studying some of the character traits or attributes of God. The girls are learning what some big words mean, like omnipotent (all powerful), omniscience (all knowing), omnipresent (exists everywhere), immutable (never changing) and more! Learning about the character traits of God not only helps us to be amazed at how great and awesome our God is but helps us to trust Him.
We are also looking at the different personality traits of horses using the Parrelli Horsenality® chart. The day we planned to do some horse evaluations it poured buckets of rain, but the girls did the surveys with several of the horse owners here at Hidden Falls Ranch Boarding Stable. On two other days with decent weather we were able to do some horse observations, once in the cold and snow and once in the mud (See pictures)! We watched how differently the horses reacted to new objects; a large exercise ball, a purple sled and another time a large cardboard box. The horses really showed their “horsenalities!” Starlight bolted and stayed a long distance away from every object introduced and even whirled away when she was way out in the pasture, while Josiah, Jhenhi and Foxy where more curious. Josiah loved the ball and started playing with it, but he was fearful of the big box. Jhenhi wanted to play with everything, in fact she was the only horse in the upper heard to approach the box, and after she started play with it Foxy came forward to check it out too. The playfulness shows the “left-brained extrovert” Horsenality® type and the fearful insecurity shows the “right-brained extrovert.” When Noelle put the box in the lower herd Fella just walked over to see what it was, so did Gabe, but he was definitely more cautious. When Preacher (a Tennessee Walker for sale) saw it he came right up to the box and started messing around with it.
According to the Perrelli Horsenality® chart, discovering a horse's dominant personality trait helps a trainer and rider to deal with the horse's strengths, weaknesses and needs. With the playful personality, you need to keep things moving and interesting, these horses are the easiest to train because they are smart and love to interact with people.
Seeing Fella be so calm was a big change from when he first came to the ranch 9 years ago. He'd been abused and was especially fearful of men and was suspicious and resistant to any rider. I worked with him and helped his new owner, Noelle (12), learn how to deal with his little routine of resistant moves. I told her she needed to be firm and consistent, but loving. We had to be very patient to teach him anything new. Now we know his personality trait is the “right-brained introvert” whose main need is “comfort”. Well, in one year Noelle's love changed him considerably, even our veterinarian noticed the difference. (Although Fella still eyes the vet with suspicion!)
The other CHC Projects are: to learn a song or write a poem that mentions at least six of God's characteristics, to take part in a field trip to see different horse breeds and their different personalities and do horse surveys. We will then compile the surveys we took and see how different breeds may show certain personality traits more than others. The girls Bible reading is a large part of the book of Isaiah and the book of Daniel. Most of the girls have completed their memory work, the following verses present several of God's attributes, can you pick them out? (Check out CHC on Face Book for the answers.) Isaiah 40:28-29 “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and His understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.” NIV®
This verse even encourages us to realize, because of His love and mercy He wants to strengthen and empower us! So when you are worn out and weary of the way things are going ask for His strength and power to help you, I know I do every day. Seek Him and be encouraged!
If you would like to know more about Christian Horse-lover's Club Inc., or if you know a Christian horse person who might be interested in starting a CHC Inc. club in their area, please check out the rest of our website or see us on Face Book or call Kim at (262)-473-5624
We are so thankful our Chc Inc. club in Whitewater had such a great summer doing the TRUST & TRAILS Unit! We did our devotions first and then went out to work with the horses. Each girl learned how to "Lunge for Respect," A Clinton Anderson ground work exercise to gain the respect and trust of a horse. We used the exercise to lunge a horse between the fence and a barrel, getting the horse to accept a tight space. In July, my husband Robin , set up an obstacle course for the girls to take the horses through. First we had them do a walk through to look at the obstacles and then they rode through or over them. These activities taught the girls how to deal with a horse when a new and scary object begins to make their horse nervous. The practce activities also helped each girls build a relationjship of trust with their horse by calmly helping the horse to understand when his rider says "It's Okay!"...means It really is OK! The girls and their horses went over a tarp, a pile of branches (which some horses tried to eat), a pile of logs, mock railroad tracks, a bridge and yes...the horse eating mailbox!!! Funny how upset some horses can get by a mailbox! The other exercises were riding a safe distance from each other, rider's communication, to pass each other safely and learn other mahneuvers used on a trial ride such as an emergency stop.
The girls memorized Proverbs 3:5-6 and Psalm 20:7. The devotions studied these verses as well as, a look at following God's will. His general will, that which is in the Bible and God's specific will, which each Believer must seek the LORD to discover what God's plans are for them.
More to come.
Our Whitewater CHClub worked hard to complete the CHOICES Unit this Spring so they could receive thier charms at the Awards Ceremony in June. We had a great day for the Awards Ceremony. It was quite hot so we stayted indoors to give the parents an overview of the PRAISE & THANKS and CHOICES Units. We sang two praise songs and the girls recited the CHC Pledge and their memory verses.
Afterwards, we went out to the round pen where the girls demonstrated the Project/Activity they worked on in the PRAISE &THANKS Unit. Alyssa I and Alyssa C. took turns helping each other practice posting on Foxy Lady. One girl lunged Foxy at a trot while the other practiced posting and then they swithced positons. Mikaela worked on several projects and chose to show us how she works with Fella to stand still for mounting. It took a while and some patience from Mikaela, but finally Fella stood nice and still while she mounted.
We had a fun and successful trip to Freedom Fest in Janesville, WI. We set up a table and brought Foxy Lady for people to pet. She was such a good girl, even when the roller coaster started and the big red fire engine parked right next to us! We did something extra special, with my daughter Amber's help, we be-friended two sweet young girls from the city and took them on the rides and ate lunch with them. We talked to many people to get the word out about CHC Inc., hoping to find a Christian horse-lover willing to start a CHC Inc. club in Milton and Janesville. We definately met many horse-crazy girls.
This summer we are having fun doing the TRUST & TRAILS Unit (one of my favorites!) We have several new girls who've joined this summer, so I have been working with them to quickly teach them the basics of riding. The whole club is working on some ground work exercises that teach the horse to trust them, to think and not react wildly. They are also learning the one-rein emergency stop, calm down cue and the hip-over. Each girl must be able to do these manuevers quickly before they are allowed to go on a trail ride. I am so grateful for my two helpers this summer, Geena and Jaylene!
We have a camp out planned to practice and do a short trail ride and in August we plan to go to the Southern Kettle Moraine Horse Park in Palmyra WI.
We will tell you more of our adventures soon!