“An ox knows its owner, and a donkey its master’s manger, but Israel does not know, My people do not understand” (Isaiah 1:3, NASB).
The confines of the familiar field were now forgotten as the small brown horse realized she was in the open territory on the other side of the fence. In the moment, she realized there were no perimeters holding her from recklessly venturing into the beckoning unknown. She could sense she had the freedom to run with the wind as far as her stout and sturdy legs could travel. Racing along the busy highway unaware of the dangers of speeding vehicles, she just ran and ran with abandon.
The drivers on the roadway saw her, and became worried about the little horse with her flowing wheat colored tail and mane, darting and trotting along-side them. They wondered who to call or what to do, to return the mare to the safety of her pen.
The little horse became scared of the sounds, smells and even of her freedom itself. I tried to call her name, but she would not listen. I tried to coax her to follow me, but she would not come. Instead she headed at full speed for steep cliff on the edge of the deeper woods. She was far and away faster than my human legs could travel. I slipped and fell numerous times as I tumbled down the treacherous bank through the briars and musky timber. At the bottom of the hill midst the thorns, burning nettle and damp mire … she stood panting. There was our little horse with her huge dark eyes finally recognizing me as her friend.
She came and nuzzled her sweating head against my right leg. I put my hand on her neck just behind her ear and tried to soothe her with some quieting words, “It’s okay … we’ll go home.” Now she only wanted to be close to me, as her face persistently nudged my leg during the uneventful journey home.
We should know our loving Heavenly Father as a simply and significantly as any animal knows its master. Yet we like any horse, can become intoxicated with the freedom beyond the confines of His designs for our safety and protection. We sometimes run with abandon in our selfishness and sin venturing into the unknown, naïvely unaware of the dangers along the highways of life. We do not know that we do not know and in those moments we do not understand His provision and purpose. So we plunge over the cliff ending up very unsure and scared midst the briars, muck and burning nettle.
What a joy to have our Heavenly Father come and find us and gently walk beside us as we journey back home to be with Him. There is nothing anywhere in the world like the mercy, compassion, grace and love our Heavenly Father gives to us over and over when we have gone astray. Thanks be to our Heavenly Father who loves us with such a great love.
“‘Come now and let us reason together,’ Says the LORD, Though your sins are as scarlet, they will be white as snow; through they be like crimson, they will be like wool” (Isaiah 1:18, NASB).
Suggested Reading – Isaiah 1