I am delighted to have Heather Stahlman as a guest blogger from To Know God Ministries sharing how she fosters her children’s heart for the Lord, develops their character, and teaches them to love His creation through horseback riding lessons…

April 7, 2018/ Heather Stahlman

“Mom, can I take horseback riding lessons?” asked my five-year-old daughter Millie. I began searching for a place near us that offered lessons for young children, and the Lord guided me to Loveland Ranch. Little did I know, that specific request and google search would change the lives of my family forever.

Loveland Ranch is nestled several miles from our home in Spring, TX, and is filled with many stories of rescue, recovery, and redemption. Each time we step on the property with our dusty cowgirl boots and faded jeans, we see the majestic hand of our Creator and Father in heaven at work.

God made all sorts of wild animals, livestock, and small animals, each able to produce offspring of the same kind. And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:25

The owner, Toni Coates, has poured out love on my family in the fashion of friendship, horse knowledge, horse supplies, and sweet lemon pies! She has made it her life’s mission to save horses (and people) from abuse and neglect while serving her community with trail rides, good home cooking, and equine therapy to those who suffer from mental illness.

One of our cherished stories of Loveland is when Millie “adopted” Surprise, a thirty-year-old thoroughbred in the first few weeks of discovering the ranch. This simply meant Millie could go and love on Surprise anytime. Millie mucked (cleaned) her pen, bathed, brushed, and fed her carrots as often as she desired.

I joyfully encouraged and explained to Millie that her actions were reflecting God’s character by loving on Surprise as she tended and cared for her Father’s creation! 

Millie mucking Surprise's pen.

Millie mucking Surprise’s pen.

The Lord gifted us with two amazing weeks with this precious four-legged-friend, until her time on this earth ended. After Millie picked and placed pretty pink flowers on Surprise’s resting place, we bowed down and prayed to thank God for the time He granted us to spend with her.

training character through horseback riding

Millie and Leni taking surprise to give her a bath.

My family and I continue to be amazed by God’s majesty each time we step foot on Loveland. We can’t help but become His vessels so His love flows through us and onto each person and creature, big or small, on the ranch. The work of His hand is so awesome and inspiring.  

All of your works will thank you, Lord, and your faithful followers will praise you. Psalms 145:10

For more great articles from Heather, visit her website: www.toknowGodministries.com

And for more about Loveland Ranch visit www.Lovelandranch.com

To Know God Ministries