We were tagging calves in a big pasture. I had just reached out and roped one. The fact that it was laying on the ground had nothing to do with my roping skills or the power that this little guy had.
He stood up, stretched, and looked up at his mama who was watching close by. He took a step toward her and the rope pulled tight. He let out a little bellow…
…and all hell broke loose.
Mama came at Fiona and me with a vengeance rarely seen since the days of Viking warriors and Elvis fans. She tried to forcibly remove my horse’s hind end, but Fiona side-stepped her.
I wish she hadn’t. The cow ended up right under us and lifted us in the air. Luckily, my horse doesn’t take kindly to cows underneath her, and she kicked that cow four times right between the eyes as she climbed off of her.
I just sat up there calmly peeing down both legs…just another day at the office.
I looked for help from my partner. He was running back to his horse with batwing chaps floppin’ for all they were worth with a mad mama on his heels.
I also had some problems with some pests in the barn where all these calves sleep, but I was able to fix it by getting a Bigfoot Pest Control service and everything was alright.
But alas, that is a story for another time.
Never doubt the power of your prayers. Some people seem to think that their small prayers won’t be heard, but God hears everything we say.
And a small voice can lead to big results.
1 John 4:14-15
And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.
© Kevin Weatherby, 2016
Visit us at www.savethecowboy.com
My friend and I stood underneath the cloudy sky as the propane tank behind my house filled. He was driving the truck and we never miss a chance to visit and talk a little about God.
After the tank was filled, Dean asked me if he needed to come in and light any pilot lights for me since I had let the tank run dry. I was flabbergasted by his complete disregard for my abilities as a man…much less a cowboy.
A cowboy doesn’t need someone to light pilot lights! That’s like asking a man if he needs you to come over and start his BBQ pit for him, or if he needs help changing a light bulb.
I can start colts, rope bulls, and rope bulls on started colts by gosh! The audacity of his question was overwhelming. I knew it was his job, and the fact that he is my friend, and he’d do anything to help me out. But really? Do I need help with anything fire related?
I don’t think so!
We shook hands after I told him that I could probably handle it and he got in his big gas truck and drove out with four dogs barking at his mud flaps. I went inside and armed myself with a fire stick and headed downstairs.
I knelt down in front of the boiler and turned the little knob to “pilot” and got it lit on the first try. Some air had to get out the line first, but I got it lit. I knew the main burners should fire right up since there was zero hot water in the entire house, but they didn’t light. Finally, I remembered the light switch that controlled the boiler had been turned off when the propane went dry. I reached up, still on my knees, and flipped the switch with the end of my blue and black long fire stick.
Immediately, an atomic bomb fireball engulfed where I was sitting. It was if I had stumbled into a dragon’s lair and the foul beast had awoken to find me knelt down in front of it playing with matches.
Lucky for me that I’m half Comanche Indian (on my mom’s side) and pretty much 7/16 ninja (from my wife’s side). I was able to levitate backward, nearly out of reach of the napalm onslaught that was attacking my face…but I still singed most of the hair off my eyebrows and the little goatee that has taken me four years to grow.
Facial hair isn’t a spiritual gift of ninja Indians.
Well, cowboys can be a lot of things, but one thing we’ve got down pat is our unmistakable optimism. Even when we think we can’t do it we are pretty sure that we can. You don’t think we can do something? Just ask us…We’ll tell you we can…And we will believe it.
There are three things that characterize a cowboy that has unmistakable optimism:
Thankfulness – A cowboy with unmistakable optimism doesn’t let his circumstances dictate his thankfulness. His thankfulness dictates his circumstances.
Contentment – A cowboy with unmistakable optimism is satisfied with what his life is, not what his life isn’t.
No quit – God doesn’t quit guiding us when we mess up, so we don’t quit God when we mess up either.
So then, my dear friends, stand firm and steady. Keep busy always in your work for the Lord, since you know that nothing you do in the Lord’s service is ever useless. 1 Corinthians 15:58
© Kevin Weatherby, 2016
If you know a cowboy that has this kind of optimism, share it with him or her! Do you know someone that needs a little encouragement to be optimistic, share it with them too. It helps us spread the Word.
Would you like to check out the whole message? You can even hear a powerful testimony from former NFL linebacker Christ Draft as he spoke at Save the Cowboy.
Go here to check it out: https://livestream.com/accounts/2788297/events/4854186
Our visit: http://www.chrisdraftfamilyfoundation.org
I woke up excited. Today was the day that I would fulfill one of my greatest dreams—drink a cup of coffee on the shore of the Sea of Galilee as the sun came up.
I grabbed a cup of coffee and headed to the shore. A hazy fog covered the sea as I knelt down and felt of the water that Jesus himself had spent most of his ministry around. I looked out into the haze and could barely make out a buoy standing sentry out there on the water all alone. It’s ghostly figure seemed to shimmer as it swayed back and forth in the gentle rolling swells.
And as I talked with God, the one prayer so personal that it hurt, I was reminded of Peter’s encounter with his own ghostly figure out on the sea during a storm. It was Jesus walking on water out to his disciples. He told them not to be afraid, but Peter told the apparition that if it was really Jesus, to call him out of the boat.
“Come on then,” Jesus said.
Peter gets out of the boat and walks on water…until he takes his eyes of Jesus and sinks. Peter cried out and the Lord lifted him up.
My situation was not much different.
I told God about how I felt. I don’t do things like other people do. Whereas most ministries fish with tried and true methods of reaching people with the gospel, I feel like I’ve stepped out of the boat and left the nets, poles, and bait behind.
I don’t draw people to Jesus with programs and prayer groups. You’ll hear me laugh far more often that you’ll hear me pray. I don’t listen to soulful songs about Jesus, yet my heart sings through the rustle of leaves in the wind while leather creaks to the cadence of hooves through grass, water, and the occasional crunch of snow. I don’t study the bible every single day, but I use it as a window through which I see how much the Lord loves me and how I might live for him. I’m no good at meetings, but I love meeting people right where they are.
I suck at counseling, but I’ll fist-fight a street vendor in Israel that tries to pick the pockets of a little old man. My mouth sometimes says things that preacher’s are not supposed to say, but I’d rather speak the blunt truth than sugared words of a cliched religion.
I don’t ask for traveling mercies. I ask for boldness.
I don’t walk around saying, “Praise Jesus”. I walk a lonely road led by him.
I don’t always pray before meals, but I’m thankful for every one.
I don’t bash my kids with scripture, but I do my best to be an example of God’s Word.
And even now, you might be thinking that you’ve got me figured out. But you don’t. You might think you like what you hear, but there will come a time when I will say something you won’t like. I’ll do something that you don’t think I should do. I’ll go up where people don’t think it’s possible and I’ll go down where people would turn around and ride off. I refuse to be in the box. I refuse to conform. My Lord didn’t live according to societal norms and neither will I. I’m not a rebel for rebellion’s sake. I just won’t be contained by the barbed wire of public opinion and I won’t try to adhere to a pretty little framed picture of what most people want their preacher’s to be.
So as these thoughts spilled into the sea, carried on waves that held our Lord, I got an answer that I could understand.
Jesus said, “You are right to step out of the boat…because growth requires risk.”
I would rather be lifted out of the waves by the hand of God than waving to him on the boat of normal life that passes him by as he beckons us out.
But I’m not asking you to follow me…I’m inviting you to come with me.
Seven Risks You Need To Take Starting Today In Order to Grow:
1. Risk your personal happiness by investing all you have in others.
2. Risk the habit of complaining. It is the currency of the thankless.
3. Risk your relationship. Make it right…one way or another.
4. Risk telling the truth.
5. Risk your dreams. Reevaluate what you think is important.
6. Risk your pride. A fool is doubled when one must prove his version of right.
7. Risk your love. If love cannot be taken advantage of then it is not really love at all.
Anyone who plays it safe will lose their life, but anyone who risks it all on Me shall find it all.
-Matthew 10:39 Simplified Cowboy Version (SCV)
Come with us at www.savethecowboy.com
Kevin Weatherby, 2016
Sundays are hard on preachers…and their dogs.
We have two guard dogs. They are African Basenji crosses and they really are from Africa. The brother and sister pair belonged to a missionary over there and these two dogs guarded the compound where she lived.
We had to get official esa letter because the very first time we left our daughter home overnight by herself, some people came out to the ranch and were trying to scare her. They were throwing rocks at the house and got her pretty shook up.
The Department of Transportation will soon decide whether an emotional support cats is a service animal. Airlines are pushing the government to adopt a more restrictive definition.
They’re lucky they were probably just punk kids and I’m glad that their stupidity went only as far as throwing small rocks. If they’d tried to come in, they probably wouldn’t be here. My daughter can shoot a recurve bow and kill rabbits at 50 feet…and that’s because she’s such a good shot with a gun that she doesn’t think hunting is even fair. Unless its coyotes that killed one of our other dogs.
So we have two Christian guard dogs.
Sunday, we were heading to church and the two dogs followed us to the end of the drive. That’s pretty typical, but on this morning, Ty (Save the Cowboy’s Wagon Boss) was at the end of the road chopping ice in a water trough. My wife lamented to me that the dogs would go across the road because Ty was there.
The famous last words of every husband, “They’ll be fine, honey.”
One mile down the road, my phone rings…it’s Ty.
“Your big red dog just got hit.”
I can feel the heat radiating from my wife, who is looking at me like I had just committed the most atrocious crime in history as she tries to guess what the phone call is about.
I turned to my wife and said, “Ty wants to know if you want a donut and a pumpkin spice latte…in Jamaica…on a beach…with finger monkeys.”
Not really. I didn’t say that, but I wanted to.
The next two miles were pretty intense as I got the details.
When we left, Rocky went to say hello to Ty. He walked right out in front of a truck, but got out of the way at the last minute. After narrowly escaping death, he decided that he’d best go guard the house because that was his calling.
But sometimes Christian dogs get it in their head that their job extends further out than it should. Rocky saw another car coming and turned around, and ran out into the road so he could bite a car going 55 mph.
The car hit Rocky right on the head and pinwheeled him into the ditch. He got up and ran back to the house. Ty jumped in his truck to go check on him and when he got to the house, Rocky ran out in front of him and he had to slam on the brakes (in the snow) to avoid running over Rocky.
I know what you’re thinking…
That donut and pumpkin spice latte sounds real good right now.
Rocky is fine, but he growls at you if you pat him on the head. He may be dumb, but he’s a tough son-of-a-gun.
I was asked yesterday about how I feel about the Syrian refugee situation and what would I do if I was president.
Here is my full answer: I have no idea.
I’m not called to be the president. I’m a cowboy and a preacher. God didn’t give me the opportunity to lead a nation, he gave me the gifts and desires to lead people down that narrow trail and through a narrow gate.
You see, I’m called to guard the house of God, not try to bite political, runaway cars driven by a lot of idiots and one or two good people.
Now I know a lot of you Christians out there are political and that’s fine. I’m not trying to change you or sway you one way or another. I’m answering a question that was asked of me.
But I went back and looked at what Jesus did about the Roman occupation of his homeland during his life on earth. These Romans were killing Jesus’ people by the thousands: Crucifixion, beating, burning, and cutting off people’s heads.
What did Jesus do about it?
That’s one reason the Jews wouldn’t believe he was the Messiah. He did nothing about the Romans. Jesus didn’t save them from Rome, he saved them from hell and themselves.
And you know what else?
Jesus never promised any of his followers that they would be safe from the bad guys. As a matter of fact, he kind of said the opposite. The early church’s mission was to love people…every kind, type, color, and those in any and every situation…and the early church’s mission hasn’t changed.
When Rome tried to kill Christianity by killing its followers, for every one they killed, ten more showed up. When plagues struck the empire, Rome left its citizens to fend for themselves and Christians went in and cared for these sick and dying people…and they died themselves, but they loved on ’em.
If you read your bibles, this old world is going to get very nasty and hard to live in. There is no stopping that from happening. We can’t save this world, but we can introduce people to the man that can save them.
And those types of people? The ones who gave their lives in service to God? The ones who put people before politics? Who didn’t love their loves so much as to shrink from death (Rev. 12:11)?
They will spend eternity in the place that so many others searched for on earth, but could not be found there.
For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. -Matthew 6:25
P.S. I will vote, pray, and support the brave men and women that make my freedom to spread the Good News possible. I’d love for you to join me.
Phil was a little kid and we were in the eighth grade. I was the new kid in school so it was a hard time for me, but Phil was nice and one of the few people I might’ve considered a friend. I also have excellent tutor from maths methods learnmate that increase my confidence.
There was a group of guys that constantly made fun of Phil. I don’t know the reason or the circumstances, but I do know what happened to them.
Phil got tired of it…that’s what happened.
I had just got my books out of my locker for my next class. I was running a little bit late and most of the halls had cleared already. Why I saw Phil quietly sneak into the boy’s bathroom near my locker was pure coincidence.
But all of a sudden, I heard a crash and then screaming…and watched Phil hurry out of the bathroom–with a huge smile plastered all over his face. He winked at me through coke-bottle thick glasses as he scooted quickly away down the hall.
I went into the bathroom and there, lying in a pool of blood, was the source of Phil’s tormenting. A pool of blood might be an exaggeration, but both lips were bleeding and not only did his nose look broke, but he might’ve been missing some teeth.
The teachers arrived and many questions were asked. I didn’t tell them a thing, but I was dying to talk to Phil.
When I found him later, he was still shaking like a leaf. He had endured years of bullying, both physical and mental, from this kid and Phil had watched him go into the boys room. In this particular bathroom, you had to turn completely turn around to see someone that walked in if you were using the stand-up variety of dispensation. Phil had snuck in while the bully was relieving himself and unbeknownst to the urinator, he grabbed the cuffs of his baggy pants and jerked as hard as he could.
When your hands are busy holding something else, you can’t quite catch yourself before your face connects with some polished chrome with lots of corners.
This is how we dealt with bullies when we were kids…and it worked.
In the 1960’s, the homes in a cul-de-sac began to gain much popularity. They were supposedly safer: No cars speeding by that might run over your child.
But they were wrong.
Child deaths increased. Why? Because in a cul-de-sac, you have to back out and its harder to see, especially when you are backing out into a dead-end of houses.
A well-meaning idea ended up being worse than the problem it intended to fix.
Bullies have always been around and will always be around. If you happen to skate through childhood without having a run-in with one, just wait until you get into the workplace.
There are two types of bullies in this world:
1. Someone who uses the threat of physical harm to intimidate, humiliate, and or manipulate another person’s feelings or well being.
2. Someone who uses the protection from physical harm to say things to intimidate, humiliate, and or manipulate another person’s feelings or well being.
We all know the big mean kid (#1). They steal your lunch money or it’s a co-worker who uses their size or temper to threaten others into doing what they want.
But then there is the second-class bully…The Cul-De-Sac Bully.
We started cracking down on bullying in our schools, but just against the first-class bully. We harshly punished anyone and everyone who used physical force; whether or not it was for personal protection. We wanted to build nice little communities where everyone was safe…but they were wrong.
You see, there used to be checks and balances. I never knew a first-class bully that didn’t end up get what’s coming to him. Just like in Phil’s case, someone will finally stand up to them and deal with it. No matter how big or bad you think you are, you will eventually run into to someone bigger and badder…or smaller and smarter.
But the other side of that was also true. You didn’t walk around saying whatever you wanted to to anyone. If you said the wrong thing to the wrong person at the wrong moment, you were liable to get punched in the mouth.
I had a guy in middle school that didn’t like me because my dad was the local sheriff and his family was always in trouble with the law. One day, he told me at lunch that my dad was a derogatory term for a particular part of a female’s anatomy and that he was going to come to my house and give my mom what my dad couldn’t.
I knocked him and his meatloaf over a table…and he got in trouble because he made the mistake of saying it loud enough for a coach that was sitting nearby to hear.
You can’t do that anymore.
Now, people can go around and say things to hurt people, intimidate people, manipulate people, and we aren’t supposed to do anything about it. Where I come from, you better watch your mouth or you might find a fist in it. It’s not like that anymore.
No longer do we just have these big, over-sized bullies taking lunch money. Now we have these little snot-nosed bullies that think they can say whatever they want to whoever they want, and not only are they protected from physical harm, they think they have the constitutional right to mentally abuse others. I don’t care how tough you are physically, words have the power to decimate someone, not just the week or so it takes a busted lip to heal, but for years and even decades.
I no longer actually remember the physical pain of the bloody noses I got from standing up to bullies. I know that I remember it hurting at the time, but I don’t think about it every time I look in the mirror. But what I do think about is the time when a little kid called me a pizza-face because of my severe acne. I still think of that today when I am washing my face…still dealing with acne as an adult. And it still hurts.
The checks and balances have been lifted. We haven’t removed the bullies, we have built them. But now they use words instead of physical violence…and we say that freedom of speech protects them. Well I believe in freedom of speech wholeheartedly. I also believe in you better use that freedom wisely.
Bonafide bullies of the first class are actually few and far in between, but the second class. Well, they are everywhere…just look at social media.
So what is the answer?
I teach my kids like this: Talk no crap, but don’t take any either.
Bullies of both kinds use confrontation as a means of intimidation because they are afraid of it. I tell my kids to confront bullies of both sides…and don’t let up. I don’t tell them to punch people in the mouth or to yell and scream. I tell them to take the high road, but never back down from a bully of either class.
Good people that turn a blind eye to abuse of any kind are the perpetuators and protectors of evil.
We need more sheepdogs…
He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous are both alike an abomination to the Lord.
Proverbs 17:15 ESV
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There is something that every woman will understand, yet to a man, it is baffling.
There are just some things that are beyond comprehension to a man. Things like: The need for dish soap in a glass that only held water, putting the seat up requires the same expelled energy as putting it down, and last but certainly not least, the exact purpose of fabric softener.
My baffling moment came when my wife wanted the back door moved…to the left…thirty inches.
But what my wife wants, she generally gets…because I love that gal.
Now the biggest problem came when we moved the door, the Mount Rushmore sized concrete porch and steps was not willing to make the transition to the left. So now when you walked out of the back door, the porch was only under your right foot…it no longer cared about your left.
When I moved the door, in my utter patience, I might have broken the back porch light. I knew there would be casualties…but it wouldn’t be the only one.
It gets pretty dark out at the ranch at night, especially with no back porch light over a surly porch that is now only doing half of its job.
Several nights later, I was walking into the kitchen when I heard my wife holler at me that she needs help. Like any good husband, I believe in my wife’s ability to handle any situation, so I acted like I didn’t hear her.
Not really…just joking.
I opened the door, and although I couldn’t see her, her beautiful voice sang a siren song as it asked me to come help her. In the rapture of my love for her, I bounded out into the darkness with my right foot, and my left foot found nothing but air to stand on.
If you’ve never fell off a concrete porch, let me tell you, it punches and kicks you all the way down.
When I hit the ground, I had two choices: get mad or laugh.
I did neither.
I just got up and evaded the well-meaning questions of my wife and helped her.
The next day, I sorted cattle during fall works. The previous couple of days were hard to say the least…the porch just adding insult to injury.
As I sorted, I realized that hard times are just an opportunity to sort out the problems in life.
And to build a new deck!
3 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. 4 And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. 5 And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love. Romans 5:3-5 NLT
Kevin Weatherby, Save the Cowboy
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I am a sinner…
I am a liar, a drunkard, a fornicator, and a hypocrite. I’m an adulterer because the Good Book says that if you even look at another woman with lust in your heart you have committed adultery. I’ve been in more fights and beds than I care to admit. I’ve turned my back on people that I could have helped far more than I’ve turned the other cheek.
I’ve abused alcohol, drugs, tobacco, and those that I love.
And I’m proud of none of it…none…of…it.
And I’m a pastor.
And as a pastor, I have run-ins with people that are real high on “holding people accountable”. It’s funny how accountability is like other people’s kids. We really want other parents to keep their kids in line, but when it’s ours that are messing up then people need to mind their own business.
I’ve had grown men sit across a table from me or ride out to check cows and confess their sins to me. After everything is said and done, we then pray and thank God for his forgiveness.
Sometimes we get better in our weaknesses and sometimes it takes a while and a lot of prayer to let go of our demons.
I just wish that the normal reaction in a church to a cowboy sinning was to run to the church leadership with a ferocity for forgiveness.
It rarely, if ever, happens.
At Save the Cowboy, we are a sick pen for sinners; not a show pen for self-righteous saints. We forgive sins, but we don’t condone them. We give second chances, but we don’t make excuses.
He who is without sin can chunk the first rock, but like I said, we don’t just shrug our shoulders at sin either.
I don’t care how good you are, you are a sinner. Your sin is not less than, it is equal to everyone else’s. But we don’t focus on people’s sin, we focus on the cross.
There are churches that are so sin focused that Jesus is seldom preached. Anyone can preach a problem, we prefer to preach the cure.
They crush people with unbearable religious demands and never lift a finger to ease the burden. -Matthew 23:4 NLT