My heart breaks a little with each goodbye. Today was our last session with two of our groups. They crawled right into my heart and it was so hard to say bye. Today we talked about kindness. Our craft was to paint our handprint on a container of flowers and write a kind note to someone and give them our flowers. The kids wrote such sweet things. We practiced kindness by petting Ella and Mort and saying kind things to them. We had snack together, played behind the barn, climbed rocks, picked flowers, and finally ended up in the arena to ride. I was humbled by the love and kindness each of these kiddos expressed today. I am excited for what the next set of sessions will bring, for the new kiddos I will meet, but I will never forget the immense things that God did in the little hearts of the ones pictured here.
One mom expressed today in broken English her thanks to us, that her little boy (just 7) had been so afraid of everything, but after being on the ranch he was so much braver!! When he first came out to the ranch he was unsure of everything: ” I don’t want to pet him that horse might bite me” ” I don’t want to go into the pasture, I can’t walk so far”. Gradually over the course of a few sessions he grew more comfortable. He rode a horse, led the horse over obstacles, ran through the pasture, and played with new friends. He faced down a giant beetle, helped to carry tack, fed horses hay and grain, and pushed the wheelbarrow. On this, our last day, I told the kids “lets go climb the big rocks!”, he did not hesitate, he just ran with the other kids to try this exciting new thing. He climbed up the side of the large rock face, carefully turned around on the little ledge and slid down on his bottom happily squealing with laughter. This rock face is not small, but the kids love to climb up it and slide down (I have trouble climbing it myself and I am a lifelong adventurer!). This little boy was so free from fear that he scrambled up to slide down over and over again. One small boy is no longer allowing fear to keep him from adventure. God designed us for freedom, for adventure, to be strong and courageous. This boy is why I am so thankful to be part of this ranch, we help kids find freedom!!!