Work.


Lost but not forsaken is the message shared for thee.
But breathless, poor and shaken seems more like life to me.

Hard days and broken spirits surround us most our life.
But if we listen, we can hear it’s silent purpose for our strife.

For in the storm is never seen the brighter days that lie ahead.
Judgement’s clouded by the scene that we can touch instead.

So persevere, not through the storm, but always persevere.
Trials unceasing are yet to come, but soon will be made clear.

Tribulation does approach with fire that burns it seems.
Walking through without reproach leaves us renewed and clean.

So take your work in stride always willing to play the part.
He’ll call not because you tried, but because He knows your heart.


The Reined Cow Horse is sometimes known as the Working Cow Horse. The Working title seems to ring more true. Although the Cow Horse is required to master the skill of reining, it’s imperative that they be able to handle the work.

They are athletic. They are intelligent. But, above all, they have heart.

The horse shown above is named Smart Boons and he is being ridden by Cory Cushing. And yes, all three pictures were taken at the same competition. (photos are by Primo Morales)

See, the National Reined Cow Horse Association (NRCHA) holds events for the Reined Cow Horse.

And, at each event, the horse is required to compete in the Herd Work, Reined Work and Fence Work.

The Herd Work, or “cutting” requires Smart Boons to enter a heard of cattle, sort one out of the herd and keep it away from the heard. Usually, two cows are “cut”, sometimes three.

The Herd Work is just the beginning. Completing a reining pattern is next. There are several patterns to choose from, but regardless of pattern, Smart Boons must complete six maneuvers – Circles, lead changes, spins, roll-backs, stops and backing up.

Is the event over? Nope, then Smart Boons must perform in the Fence Work. He must box a cow on one end of the arena, send the cow down the fence and turn back the cow, twice.

Then, Smart Boons must circle up the cow. “Circling up” requires him to basically run circles around the cow in an effort to gain complete control of the cow.

Pretty easy to see why these guys are called Working Cow Horses.


When we’re in the middle of a tough time, we focus on that. Or, at least I know I do. We always want to know why. We want to know what’s next. We want to know what this is teaching us and when it’s going to be over.

It seems, like an event in the NRCHA, that as soon as we think we’re in the clear… as soon as we get something accomplished, BAM! we get asked to do something else… something else that’s just as difficult, if not more difficult than what we’ve just been through.

And it seems so random. Imagine, being sent into a heard of cattle. Peel one out by itself. Now keep it in front of you. Always in front. Run hard, stop hard and change directions hard. But keep it in front.

Then you get sent in again. Only there’s is no cow in site. What the hell? That was so important just a second ago and now there’s not even a cow in here?!?!?

OK, we got through that alright. And back in the show-pen we go. Only now, there’s a cow again. Except there’s only one. Keep it front?

Nope.

Box it a couple of times and then run as fast as you can beside him until you can change the cows direction. Then run circles around the cow.

Are you freakin’ kidding me!?!

This is how life seems sometimes. One thing after another. And it’s not one easy thing after another either. It’s one hard thing after another.

So Remember This

Smart Boons would not have been at the NRCHA Derby if he was not capable. Cory would not have taken him.

1 Corinthians 10:13
No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.

Smart Boons’ hard days prior to his competition made him ready. To him, every day was hard. His limits were pushed. There’s a characteristic among horses that is highly sought after and greatly valued.

It’s heart.

What’s heart? Heart is Smart Boons’ ability to run 110% into the work at hand without worrying about how hard it is, how random it is, or how long it will take. He just works.

His ability, stamina and training made him ready… And his heart made him famous.

Galatians 6:9
Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

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5 thoughts on “Work.

  1. This is a pretty incredible comparison. It makes me smile to think of a good horse just doing his job. Come to find out, that is the same thing we are down here doing -our job. Thanks for the enlightenment. I’ll keep this at the front of my mind…

  2. Great work fella.. myself a lover of poetry.. loved the lines in the beginning.. wish I could write like that..

  3. My family owns smart boons and he is such an amazing horse and athlete. He seriously brings so much light to us. Not just becuase he wins but becuase he tries his hardest everytime. This was a really cool comparison and analogy!!

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