Photos from the Kansas Horsemanship Priority Clinic
Sponsored By

Special Thanks to Ernie Rodina Whom God Used to Make this event happen.


A Poem From Kansas. Followed by a Testimony of Faith.

Horseman's Priority Clinic
Weber Arena, Manhattan, KS
February 7, 2004
by Ron Wilson, Poet Lariat

Thanks, folks for comin' to this clinic today.
Our great clinicians have had lots to say.

We thank our sponsors, John Deere and Purina,
And the one and only Ernie Rodina.

They've brought us some of the top horse trainers in the nation:
Kerry Kuhn, Brent Wright, and Shannon Hall as a foundation.

Now we've had a good supper, and I know without fail,
You'll enjoy the music of Belinda Gail.

So we've learned about the horses that we love -
But we're also getting guidance from up above.

Cowboys for Christ is our co-sponsor here,
With a mission to present the Gospel crystal clear.

Cowboys for Christ was founded by Brother Ted Pressley,
Who created this wonderful ministry.

It provides fellowship, service, and outreach.
You won't want to miss hearing Brother Ted preach.

Tomorrow is cowboy church before we depart,
And I ask you to come with an open heart.

And there's a way to have this fellowship again,
As the new local chapter of Cowboys for Christ begins.

So we invite you to join our fellowship today,
As the Good Lord helps to show us the way.

Now thanks for being part of a great clinic this year.
Enjoy the weekend. We're mighty glad you're here.

A Testimony of Faith.

I was raised as a member of a church, but chose to leave the church, for various reasons, many years ago.

Last Fall, a particularly saddening challenge was placed in my path and as a consequence of the only acceptable response for me to make, I had to give up my little horse training business.

I went into a depression. Eventually, I knew I needed help and so I began sessions with a mental health counselor. I began the process of healing.

However, I still felt adrift and in need of guidance and a sense of direction.

A little background information: the day before the traumatic event to which I referred above, I was at a horse show and I lost my good felt show hat and the nice hard plastic carrier that it was in. Looked and looked and couldn't find it.

A couple of days ago, a friend won 4 tickets to the KSU horsemen's clinic that was co-sponsored by Purina, John Deere, and Cowboys for Christ. My friend already had tickets and offered me these tickets. I accepted them. When I saw that the theme of the conference was "Putting your life into perspective," I was intrigued, because that was exactly what I've been struggling to do.

I gave 2 tickets to a couple other friends who then drove up to meet me at the conference. We enjoyed presentations by a young lady who demonstrated the Lyons methods, and trainer Kerry Kuhn, and NRHA champion Brent Wright, and NCHA champion Shannon Hall. Each of them witnessed to us, and Dr. Pressley invited us to the Sunday morning Cowboy Church service. Ted talked about how we would have fun, and I thought about how novel the idea is to me of having fun in church!

My friends stayed at my house overnight and were up and around earlier than me, so they went on to Cowboy Church. I got up and got dressed to go, and one of the house cats begged for fresh food, so I went to fetch some more cat food for his dish.

As I bent over to scoop up some cat food, I saw one of my coats on the floor. I picked up my coat, and there was my missing hard plastic western hat case! Wow! Was the hat in it too? That would be too good to believe! Opened it up, and yep, there was the hat, in excellent condition.

Then I realized, God had sent me a sign. A very PERSONAL sign, using symbols that were very meaningful to ME! What could be more loving? How much He showed that He knows me so well! The use of the western hat and the hat box, you see, relate to my life as a horsewoman and are therefore very meaningful to me.

That I discovered my hat while I was getting ready to go to Cowboy Church was God's way of showing me that I was doing the right thing and that this is the path He has chosen for me. That by continuing my work with horses, I am doing the work He intended for me to do. And that He wants me back as a Christian and that He wants me to put Him first. That now that I know He wants me, I know that by putting Him first, He will take care of me and my little horse business.

I got to Cowboy Church a little late, but I was very happy to be there, with my brothers and sisters in Christ together through our love of horses and the land. I thoroughly enjoyed Dr. Pressley's teaching. I've never been to a church service like this before, with so much joy and genuine celebration.

Two young women took baptism at the conclusion of the service. A stock tank was used for the baptism. A tank heater had been used so that the water would be comfortable. You don't see something like at a traditional baptism!

My friends were very supportive after the service, when I told them about the sign that God had given me. I explained to my friends that I still can't believe in God the way He was taught to me as a child, as kind of a cranky old man in a white nightgown, but that I really appreciate God's choice of such personal symbols for speaking to me, and most of all, I appreciate His wonderful sense of humor in the use of my hat and hatbox!

I hope to attend more Cowboy Churches. I feel comfortable and welcome here. You see, it is hard to get me out of my boots and jeans. I am simply not a heels and stockings kind of gal. I am shy and I generally feel uncomfortable in groups of people. One of the reasons I am shy this way is because of the bad experiences I had in Sunday school as a child. But at Cowboy Church, I can stay in my jeans and boots and I can be myself.

I've lived much of my life up to this point trying to please other people. I now know that the reason I am so horse crazy is because God made me that way and that when I work with horses, I am doing the work He wants me to do.

I also see the larger pattern of how the bad thing that happened to my family last fall was also part of God's plan to help me come back to Him and to place Him first in my life. And think of all the things that had to be timed just right for me to received His message at just the right time in just the right frame of mind...

But most of all, I really am impressed with God's sense of humor. A western hat and a hatbox as signs from Heaven!

With love,

ęCopyright By Cowboys for Christ, All Rights Reserved 1973-2010
Last Update May 2010

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