Two months ago I wrote the following words after a very frustrating and unmanageable day with my horses.  “I’ve used the 12 Steps to overcome addictions and co-dependency… now (God) wants to teach me that these eternal principles can apply even to my horses….Over the next weeks and months I have felt impressed to write about this journey to discover God is the healer of all things, even a broken relationship with my horses.” For the next few weeks I faithfully posted the lessons I was learning.  Then a tragedy occurred with my horses.  I didn’t see how I could continue writing.  How could God allow this when I had publicly committed to journal my experience of applying the 12 step principles to my horses?  As we began Step 2 in Healing Through Christ my writing stopped.

So why am I posting again after almost 6 weeks of silence?  On Friday President Russell M. Nelson shared a video message, “The Healing Power of Gratitude.”  He said “I have concluded that counting our blessings is far better than recounting our problems. No matter our situation, showing gratitude…is a fast-acting and longlasting spiritual prescription. Does gratitude spare us from sorrow, sadness, grief, and pain? No, but it does soothe our feelings. It provides us with a greater perspective on the very purpose and joy of life…We can even give thanks for our trials, from which we learn things we would not know otherwise…As a doctor, I know the value of good therapy. So, dear friends, may…I invite you—just for the next seven days—to turn social media into your own personal gratitude journal. Post every day about what you are grateful for, whom you are grateful for, and why you are grateful. At the end of seven days, see if you feel happier and more at peace.”

I didn’t have a social media platform to write from but I knew I had committed to write on The Arbor Kalamazoo website.  I also realized that I had only been counting the problems that began that day and ignored the gentle promptings of blessings.  I wept as I recalled the miracles of that tragic day.  The vet only lived three miles away, was home and came immediately.  My husband and trainer helped calm the frightened horses.  My trainer was able to work with the vet to sedate and stitch up the wound.  The cut needed only 10 stitches.  My trainer and daughter who have helped everyday to give antibiotics, cleanse, rebandage and apply the daily medicine to the wounds.  My older mare, where all the trouble began with a bee sting, recovered the next day.  My list could go on and on.  As I counted the miracles my heart is filled with “the healing power of gratitude” and I was “happier and more at peace.”

There are many lessons I will yet tell about what happened that day and countless blessings that I will continue to be grateful for. President Nelson is right, gratitude didn’t spare me from all sadness, but it provides me with greater perspective.  I can even give thanks for my trials, from which I can learn things we would not otherwise know.  Thank you Lord, for healing my heart and my horses.  #GiveThanks


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