The wrangler patted my horse’s neck. “This is Babe,” he said, “and she’s been trained as a cutting horse. Know what that means?”
I nodded. I’d seen cutting horses in action as they stepped into a herd of cattle, singled out a steer and manoeuvred it until it stood alone or was forced into a nearby shute. I knew cutting horses were trained to respond immediately to the rider’s cues.
Babe was definitely a cutting horse. The slightest touch of the rein on her neck made her respond, indeed, leap to respond. She almost put me off a couple of times, as we made our way along the mountain trails, but once I got used to her she was a delight to ride.
I thought of Babe one time, when I felt a nudge from the Lord. But I was busy that day so I ignored it. The next day I felt the push again, but again, I dismissed it. I’ll make the call later, I thought. But the days flew by. The nudge kept coming, so finally, more than a week after I felt that first prompting, I picked up the phone and called my friend. “Been thinking about you,” I said. “How’s life?”
There was silence for a moment, then a soft whimper. I heard my friend take a deep steadying breath. “My mom died a week ago.”
I groaned and expressed my sorrow. We chatted for some time and then said good-bye. “Thanks so much for calling,” my friend said. “It means a lot.”
I was so glad I’d finally responded to God’s prompting. But I couldn’t help but wonder if my words would have been more of a help if I’d called right away, on first nudge.
Lord, I prayed, make me like Babe. Make me willing to respond to your voice immediately. Make me as eager to obey as Babe was.
I want to be like David, too, as he says in Psalm 119:59,60 – “When I think on my ways, I turn my feet to your testimonies; I hasten and do not delay to keep your commands.”
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