19 August 2014

Breaking In

Founders Note: Today on the blog we have one of are monthly contributors Courtney, she is sharing her heart on this  month's theme Beauty in the Brokenness. You can find out more about Courtney and her blog on the about page. 

When I was 12, I was horse CRAZY. Every item of clothing that I owned had a horse on it. Shirts, pants, sweatshirts, and socks were plastered with horses. I spent hours studying horses. I could tell you how many teeth a horse had and where each breed descended from.

I was especially fascinated by horse training. If you are not familiar with equestrian lingo, training a new horse is called breaking it. It does not hurt the horse, but the horse is introduced to things that are very scary to it. 
Unfamiliar things are put in its mouth and on its back. At the end of the training process, you have an animal that is gentle and ready to ride.

As I was thinking about this month's topic, I thought how the Christian life is a bit like breaking in a horse. God "breaks us in," so to speak and trains us to be godly men and women through sanctification. There are three ways that the Christian life is like breaking a horse.

1. It can be scary. Just as for the horse the breaking process is scary, so the breaking process for us is scary. Sanctification goes against our very nature. We want to continue in our sin. We want to be comfortable. But God places us in circumstances that are difficult in order to break us and to mold us to be more like Him.

2. It is done slowly. This breaking process is not done quickly or harshly. Much like you would gently break a horse, the Lord carefully works in our lives to cause us to be like Him. His goal is not to crush our spirits, but to conform us to His image. It is a lifetime process.

3. It is increasingly hard. You don't start a horse out by putting a saddle and rider on it. You have to work up to that. Similarly, the Lord increases the difficulties in our life to make us more like Him. As we build up endurance, our faith is tested more and more.

Have you ever watched a well-trained horse jump fences or perform dressage? It is incredibly beautiful to watch the horse and rider seamlessly work together. It is only possible though because the horse has been broken and trained. In the same way, there is beauty in our broken lives. We, who were once sinners enslaved to our sin, are now being sanctified to be like our Savior. We are a beautiful reflection of the one who has saved and redeemed us.

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