Teddy Roosevelt once said “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done better.  The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strived valiantly; who errs, who comes again and again because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds’ who knows great enthusiasms; the great devotions’ who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.”  I love listening to Brené Brown talk on vulnerability.  I don’t agree with everything that she says, but there is a lot of value to what she says.  When I was recently listening to her new Netflix special I was so encouraged.  If I am completely honest – and vulnerable – with you,  I must tell you, I feel terrified and under-qualified to do what I do.  I am terrified of failing, but I am also terrified (probably more so) of success.  What trumps those fears are two things:  1) I want to be obedient to my God 2) I want to demonstrate to my daughter how to step out of our comfort zones with faith, grace, and vulnerability.  

Listening to Brené and reading Roosevelt’s quote made me realize a few things:

  1. Failure is inevitable.  It is not a matter of if you fail, but when and how you pick yourself back up. This is something that I have to remind myself frequently.  I want to avoid failure at all cost.  How humiliating would it be to fail?  How humiliating would it be to hear what people really think of me and what I offer?  

2) Success is in the try.  Whenever we dare greatly, we need to allow ourselves to feel successful simply in the fact that we stepped out of our comfort zone and became vulnerable.  Vulnerability is success in and of itself.  Trying is a risk.  It takes courage.  Courage and vulnerability are synonymous.    

3) Failure is never impossible, but without taking a chance success is impossible.  If you are not willing to fail, then you cannot innovate.  If we never put ourselves out there then we never give success even a chance.

How does this relate to horses?

When horses are in a wild herd, they are honest and vulnerable with each other 100% of the time.  This is what creates connection, trust and herd mentality.  It establishes a support system that is necessary for survival and thriving.  

How was Jesus vulnerable?

Jesus was vulnerable over an over again.  He was vulnerable when he would heal people, he was vulnerable at the cross, he was vulnerable at birth, he was vulnerable when he taught his disciples.  Jesus lived courageously and with vulnerability and it changed the world.