It's Not About the Horse
EMBRACE is not about the horse. EMBRACE is about what the horse is going to teach you about yourself and your relationships. Particularly your relationship with Jesus Christ. Your faith, or lack of it, will be revealed, and the session leaders will then be able to do the real work: help you trust in yourself and the horse.
It will be your first real relationship that isn't based on lies or fear, but honest communication and genuine connection, and it will lead to the greatest relationship you could ever possibly have. Every week a group of women from UGM come back to EMBRACE. There are two things she can count on: the ladies will be there, and so will the horse she connected with. She will be remembered, and she will be loved on. The women stand on principles of the Bible that do not change, so she will not be caught off guard by sudden hateful or intentionally hurtful behavior.
The horse she's chosen cannot lie, so she will never be deceived. He might be a little ornery, but as long as she is confident and makes it clear what's expected, he will get in line with her and they will be one. If she doesn't know how to do that, she will be taught. While basic horsemanship is taught, EMBRACE is not about the horse. EMBRACE uses your relationship with the horse as a parallel to God's relationship with you. There has to be order, direction, leadership, submission, cooperation, communication, fun, discipline, struggle and play. God may let you loose in nothing but a halter to run and kick and play but He'll do it in a fenced area. Whether that fence surrounds thirty feet or thirty acres is up to Him.
The bigger the area the higher the chance something unwanted and hurtful can sneak in. He might insist you do a maneuver that doesn't make any sense at all, and even scares you a bit, like crossing a bubbling creek on a trail ride. He'll be patient as you assess the situation, roll his eyes when you freak out as you sprint across or refuse to cross at all, and eventually will get your stubborn butt across that creek and end up saying, "See, that wasn't so bad." And it really wasn't. EMBRACE helps you to build trust with the One who matters most. He's given you no good reason to deny Him, no reason not to trust Him. Through EMBRACE, you'll learn to do the same for the horse. And you'll learn some pretty great horsemanship in the process.