If you have never read these books, I strongly encourage you to.
These books are about "Crystal Peaks Youth Ranch" in Oregon. It is stories about horses they've rescued and children they helped.
First, some information about the author.
Kim and her husband, Troy, own and operate a large ranch located on what used to be wasteland. They transported hundreds of trees and worked hard putting in good soil so that land would be useful again.
Now, they rescue abused and neglected horses and pair them with abused children. It's very touching.
The first book, Hope Rising, is the better read, I think. It has more stories about children. But both are amazing.
Now let me tell you how I found these books and what they helped me realize.
In January (2012) I was reading "A Purpose-Driven Life" and in it were some thought-provoking things about using your talents to serve God. I thought: Well, I really love horses, and I want to work with them my entire life. But how can I serve God using horses?
The thought entered my mind: What if I would have a ranch where city children (or any child in need) could come and ride?
But I never thought there was anything like that out there, and so tucked the thought in the back of my mind.
Then, in June (around that time) I came across "L5YouthRanch". Click here to visit their website. I was so excited! Here was proof that my dream could come true. They did the exact thing I had dreamed of!
I contacted them and told them how encouraged I was by their work with horses and children. They gave me a link to Crystal Peaks Youth Ranch (which Kim Meeder owns). Click here to visit their website.
This was even more like I had dreamed! I thought: This is all coming together. Why else would God put this dream in my mind, then show me two places that do that exact thing? He's showing me that it is possible.
I read her two books, Hope Rising and Bridge Called Hope.
That is what I want to do, Lord. I want to serve you like that.
Within the span of a couple months, I had found 2 more ranches/organizations that did that:
HIS Ranch (located in MO) which got their idea for their ranch from the book Hope Rising.
And I became more certain that this is my purpose in life.
I encourage you to visit all their websites and read about their ministry.
Cowboy Up for Christ also has a FaceBook page.
And HIS Ranch has a FaceBook page also.
I'm only 15, so it will be a while until I could have a ranch like these anyway.
So, for now, I want to serve God where I am.
I am excited about where this might all lead, but it is all in God's hands and I just want to be in the center of His perfect will.