Just ask the horse

I heard a story about a man riding a horse at breakneck speed.  It appears he’s going someplace very important.  A man standing along the roadside shouts, “Where are you going?”  To which the rider yells back, “I don’t know.   Ask the horse.”

This seems to be essentially the story I’m hearing from lots of people today.  They’re riding the horse of circumstances, their habits or other people’s expectations.  If that describes you, it’s time to grab the reins and move your life in the direction of where you really want to go.

One of the defining moments of my life occurred when I was about 13 years old.  The direction of my life was pretty clear.  My dad was a farmer – and expected me to help him and to eventually take over the family farm.  I acknowledged that because of my circumstances and the family I was born into, farming would in fact be my future.

Then I somehow got a copy of the little 33.3 rpm recording of Earl Nightingale called The Strangest Secret.  The central message was this – We become what we think about.  That opened a door to a whole new world of possibilities for me that has never been closed.

What are you thinking about?  If your mind is controlled by the bad economy, the recession, the unemployment, the unfairness of the company, the hurt of a past relationship, or the limitations of your formal education, your “horse” will be taking you toward scarcity, misery, and unhappiness.

Honestly, I still enjoy many things about farm life, and love the pleasures of living in the country on our little farm today.  But what I saw as limitations are gone.  And yes, that’s really my tractor – a 1937 Allis Chalmers B.

Where is your thinking taking you?  Is some wild horse of circumstances misdirecting you, or are you moving exactly in the direction of your dreams?

Click here to watch a 3 minute video of The Strangest Secret.

“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things…..and the God of peace shall be with you.” (Phil 4: 8-9 KJV)

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10 Responses to “Just ask the horse”

  1. Josh Bulloc Says:


    From what I see people are being more controlled by following the crowd and not wanting to even consider there is a better way to live.

    Josh Bulloc
    Kansas City, MO

  2. soon to be jobless Says:

    cool tractor, looks like it’s in nice shape.

    once again, I find myself in a negative work situation. another bad review on this job of 5 years. if I don’t fix the bad performance, I’m fired. My performance is fine. I’ve made some people mad and they want me out. So they are lying and making up all this bad stuff about me so they can fire me. Happened to me once before working for government. 21 years the first time, they built a false case and fired me. now 7 years later it’s happening once again. lol- I don’t think God likes me anymore. I dunno, or he’s trying to push me on to other things? My life sucks right now.. has for years really… I just kept ignoring it. I’ve been following this horse for 28 years… it keeps returning me to the same place… low paying jobs that I hate. And me being broke all the time…

  3. Butch Says:

    The Scripture reference is actually from Philippians rather than Proverbs. One of my favorites!

  4. Theresa Lode Says:

    Once again Dan, a very timely post. I’m better than I used to be at allowing my imaginative horses to take me for a wild ride. I’ve experience bankruptcy, homelessness, brain tumors, the lost of loved ones and terrible, terrible trajedy! …all in the confines of my mind.

    It’s a day to day choice to see the glass half full.

    Some days it’s a harder battle than others but the alternative is more costly and (shudder) NOT where I want to live.

    Soon to be jobless….Check out some of Dale Carnegie’s books…they’ve been enormously helpful to me and millions of others through the years. You’ll find some wonderful encouragements and insights.

  5. Joanne Miller Says:

    Wow………..Soon to be jobless……….the first time you were let go because people didn’t like you should have been a wake up call. If it is happening again, you must still have more to learn. The fact that you said openly you have had nothing but jobs you hate says volumes about why you are ultimately getting let go. If you hate what you are doing, you will sabotage yourself every time. I agree with Theresa, read Dale Carnegie books and also ask people closest to you to be honest with you. AND confront those people who don’t like you at work and ask nicely WHY they don’t like you and what you can do to improve. Your ability to salvage your life and make it better HAS to begin with YOU. Life isn’t easy at best but if you learn to like who you are, I’ll bet you would find it easier to bear.

  6. Dan Miller Says:

    Butch – oh wow. I know better – can’t believe I did that. I draw from Proverbs a lot but this is not one.

    I made the change immediately – so people are now seeing the Philippians reference.

    Thanks so much for bringing it to my attention.

  7. Linda James Says:

    I’m afraid I have been on that horse way too long even though I know exactly what I want to be doing and have been mentally preparing to grab the reins. At least I have that figured out – now I just have to conquer my fears and concerns about how to move forward without savings to fall back on. The idea of projecting what I really want in life rather than only what seems a possibility in my limited mind is a brand new concept for me. However, I’m halfway through my first Dan Miller book – “No More Mondays” and I’m inspired and I’m already setting my goals on paper. The dream that I have had since I was about 10 years old will happen and I’ve begun taking the steps toward that dream. Thanks Dan!

  8. Mike G Says:

    Great verse, nice tractor, my father in law used to try to get me to go to tractor pull competitions. Booorrriinngg for this city boy. I know the verse comes from Philippians 4:8-9.

  9. mattie rainier dibona Says:

    this was really good and really true. thanks for sharing it with us.

  10. Darren Says:

    A lot of people focus too much on things they can’t control. I try to ignore the negative news on TV, and focus on how I can better myself and affect the people around me positively.

    It reminds me of this quote: “It’s not so much what happens in the White House, but rather what happens in YOUR house that matters.”

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