Horse Sense Milo's First Annual Gymkhana Games

Milo Adventist Academy’s horse club hosted the first annual Gymkhana Games on Sept. 25. The events included barrel racing, jousting, barrel weaving, and even an obstacle course. Kirk Haley, the boys’ dean, timed us, and his wife, Darlene Haley, kept each rider’s personal score.

Since the first Gymkhana Games were such a success, club sponsor Haley is planning to make them a regular part of the horse club program. The club was founded in 1997 when the first two horses were received from Big Lake Youth Camp to board during the winter months. The stables now include a number of Big Lake horses, in addition to several privately owned horses. Besides providing a recreational activity for students, horse club is a learning experience.

By working with horses, I have learned responsibility. I can’t just put off feeding and exercising the horses until tomorrow; I have to be consistent.

I have learned that no matter how I feel, I cannot take it out on the people or animals around me. If I were to take my frustration out on a horse, that horse would lose trust in me and no longer want to be my friend. Once I lose the trust of a horse, it might take up to three times as long to regain the horses’s trust as it did in the first place.

God works through all different kinds of people, and even animals, to show us how much he loves us. Horses are one type of special messenger for God.

December 01, 2004 / Oregon Conference