Not only riders go “off-course”!

“Random dude wins Venice marathon after leaders directed wrong way,” reported news feed in Oct. 2018. As planned, the motorcycle race guide left the course at 16 miles. Maybe the runners forgot that detail or didn’t read the fine print, but they followed the “guides” off-course.

Local runner Eyob Faniel did not follow the leader. And he’s glad he didn’t.

I know that feeling- whistled off-course as a young rider more times than I can count.

Judging horse shows, my heart sinks as I watch the first rider execute an “alternative pattern” followed by the next rider…and the next.

Yikes, did I submit the wrong pattern?

What I’ve learned from my mistakes:

  1. Deeply memorize your pattern.  Walk it. Talk it. Teach it to someone else.
  2. Consider the deviations of the leaders – could they be right?
  3. Have the courage to stick to your plan.

I love the opportunity to speak to young people “Life lessons learned from horses”

  1. We all need a This I know in life.  Answers to life’s big questions, anchoring my soul at the in-gate of life, even as I watch others choose alternative patterns.
  2. Consider opinions different than my own.  Weigh them with intellectual honesty and an openness to change.
  3. Have the courage to stick to my plan – despite cultural trends, social media voices or my “feelings”.

None of us plans to mess up our lives.  We just don’t plan not to.”  Pastor Andy Stanley

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise.” Ephesians 5:15. The Bible