Sampson’s Second Chance

A new beginning started with a loss.  January 4th, 2011 I lost my beloved strawberry roan mare, Kisper Don, whom had been my friend and companion for nearly 23 years.  Mid-January, I had a dream.  In this dream, my other horse who is a deep golden palomino, Sunny, started turning “red” all over his body in patches until he looked like he was morphing into Kisper.  Then, a shorter pony type golden palomino horse appeared out of nowhere in my pasture.  Somehow, I knew he was there to stay with me.  I woke up, figured I was grieving the loss of my sweet mare, and that was why I dreamed Sunny was “morphing” into looking red.  I soon forgot all about the dream.

Fast forward about two weeks and one of my former students’ moms contacted me out of the blue.  She told me she thought she had a horse that was meant to be mine.  Skeptical,  still reeling from the loss of my mare, and still paying off my veterinary bills from everything we went through with Kisper, I was not eager to take on another horse so soon.  This mom, I will call her “Sherry,” emailed me this story about her horse named Tucker (whom we renamed Sampson).

Picture of Sampson's face up close.

Sampson Up Close and Curious

Sherry was riding Tucker’s mother to decide whether or not she wanted to purchase the fine Halflinger mare.  During this ride, her 6 week old weanling was locked in a stall.  Tucker panicked at the absence of his mother and badly injured part of his jaw, knocking out a couple of his baby teeth.  Wanting to only own a trained horse, Sherry at first decided she would only purchase the mare.  Tucker’s original owner indicated that since he had no value to her due to his injury, she would have him put down.  Sherry did not feel right about this, so she went home and prayed about it.  What came of this prayer surprised her.  God told her she was to bring both of them home and that she was only to be an interim home for the little colt, and that He would show her who his permanent home was meant to be.

Being a purebred Halflinger made Sampson quite novel and desirable since the breed is extremely versatile and not very common yet in the United States.  Many people were interested in purchasing Sampson, but every time after praying, Sherry never felt they were the right person for him.  And now, I wasn’t even looking for another horse, yet she was offering him to me.

Still, we had a lot of vet bills from Kisper, Sampson was completely untrained, and his injury as a weanling left his mouth abnormally formed.  This meant he would require more vigilant and more frequent dental work, which is quite expensive.  Could we afford to take on another horse right now?  Was this a horse God wanted us to take?  I knew God was calling me to use my horses to help kids, and did Sampson have the aptitude for this? He was a nice looking horse, but I was still uncertain.  We have to be responsible with our available financial resources, and if we accepted every horse that was offered to us, we’d very soon be overrun with too many of them.

I had to know for sure if this was the right thing to do or not.  I needed confirmation.  I couldn’t just make a decision like this based on a guess.  So, I mulled over it for about a week.  I prayed.  And I waited.

And then, it hit me!  Like a rushing wave of water, it flooded me.  The dream I had forgotten came back to me! Sampson was the exact image of the “smaller palomino pony type horse” that suddenly “appeared” in my pasture in the dream.  Before I had ever laid eyes on this horse, before I even knew he existed, God had sent him to me in a dream.  God had answered my question before I had even had a question to ask. Amazing!

Oh, yeah, and the strange part of the dream where Sunny was turning “red” in patches all over?  He contracted a very bad case of horse ring-worm and was loosing his wintery golden fur coat.  And guess what color it was growing back in?  A soft red, just like I had seen.

I asked Sherry, later, why I was the right one.  She said that she believed God chose me because I wanted to use my horses to help kids, and every time she had prayed about me being the permanent owner, she had a strong feeling of peace which spoke to her of God’s guiding presence.

So, years before I even knew I’d need a stocky, strong, short horse who loves attention to use as a kids’ mount to ride on, God was saving a little 6 week old weanling baby through the faithful obedience of a dear lady of faith!

Sometimes we all need another chance.  What’s your story of a second chance?

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