What We Need Are More Cowboys

by Kevin on October 21, 2011

There was once a young man that came to a ranch begging for a job as a cowboy. He told the ranch manager that he would work cheap, and work hard, for just a chance at the cowboying life. The ranch manager, who was a generous man, took the boy in and gave him a job. The ranch owner didn’t have any sons and he kind of liked the kid.

Now some of the older cowboys on the outfit kind of took a liking to the boy and his willingness to learn their trade. They spoke to him about cowboy lore and ways that cowboys lived their lives. They taught him to rope, ride, and gather cattle. The cowboys spent hours in the horse pen teaching the young buck to throw a hoolihan loop.

Well, time went by quickly for the new cowboy. He was a quick learner and the first thing he learned was how to not complain and ignore the bumps and bruises. Cowboys seem to always have a limp or a hitch in their get-a-long somewhere, but never a complaint.

In the time since he had arrived, the rancher’s daughter had gone from a rough and tough tomboy to a beautiful young lady. Now being the only two young ones on the ranch, nature kind of took over and before long the young man seemed to be more interested in that young lady than he was in cowboyin’. The older cowboys didn’t mind much. They all sat around and told stories of the way they had acted when they were young.

The wedding that followed was a huge ranch blow out. People came from miles around to see the young ones get hitched. The ranch owner was proud that his daughter and new son-in-law were to be staying right where they were. He would have someone to pass the ranch down to.

After the wedding, the young man started to change. He knew that one day the ranch would be his. He also knew that one day he would be boss over these cowboys that had taught him everything he knew. He began telling these cowboys what to do. Little things at first, disguised as favors of one sort or another. Later, he just took over.

This same boy who had learned everything from these men, somehow gained supernatural cowboy insight and abilities when he married the rancher’s daughter. He now knew the best way to break the horses. He knew the best way to gather the cattle, and if you disagreed with him, he either pouted or blew up. To keep the peace, them cowboys just kind of kept to themselves. They still loved the young man, but they longed for the kid again.

They longed for the kid who had been so willing to work along side them instead of rule them. They longed for the kid who asked a million wide-eyed questions instead of the young man that now told them how much he knew. They longed for the kid who had been the first one up and the last one to go down because he was willing. But what they had now was a young man that was the last one up and the first to go down because he was married to the rancher’s daughter.

How often have you seen this very thing happen with Christians you know? Someone comes in and finds the Lord and gets all excited about being a Christian. The next thing you know he is looking down his nose at you in a holier than thou expression. The person that was asking you six months ago if the Book of Job was a story about the factory where Jesus worked is now pointing out everyone’s flaws and mistakes. The mark of a mature Christian is living a life that is a good example and willing to serve. The mark of an immature Christian is someone who points out a life that is a bad example and demanding to lead.

Matthew 23:11

The greatest among you will be your servant.

The cowboys in the story never stopped serving. They were quick to teach and slow to anger. They served in the good and the bad. Everyone today wants to be a Chief instead of just an Indian. What we really need are just more cowboys.

Rockin' K Bar Photography

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