Precious Jana is one of many who have had the opportunity to do our horse therapy program. The way the Lord moved in her life during that week has inspired us and given us such re-affirmation of the truth that our mighty Father is working in and through our ministry. Jana was born with Cerebral Palsy. Her life has been quite a journey as she has learned to communicate through sign language, has had two surgeries on her legs to enable her to hopefully one day walk on her own, and has been in and out of the hospital fighting seizures and many other medical battles. Carolyn, Jana’s mother, has been one of Jana’s biggest cheerleaders as Jana has learned and grown every day. Jana is incredibly brave. Her mind is brilliant and defeat is never an option for her. When Carolyn heard about our horse therapy program, she knew it would be just right for her daughter. She said that this “outside the box” kind of therapy has worked best with Jana. Carolyn went on to explain to me what just a single day of riding did for Jana and how empowering it was for her. Here is her story of triumph!
After the first day of the horse therapy program, Jana went home with a confidence like never before. Carolyn described that she not only saw that Jana’s time at the barn was helping her physically, but even more so emotionally and spiritually. Jana’s heart, body, mind, and soul were captivated by the presence of God. His love penetrated every part of her being. Jana didn’t have to say a word, her family noticed a lift in their beloved’s Spirit. Her confidence was contagious! Joy swelled in her heart leaving a trace of change wherever she was. That night, Jana was with her helper, Cassidy, and they were practicing getting Jana on her feet. It’s something they do often as a part of her therapeutic process. While on the edge of the bed, Jana will bounce to get to her feet, and then practices taking steps with Cassidy’s help. But, on this night, the Lord’s victory and great work in this strong-willed Spirit was ever-so evident. Jana took her first step alone! (the video can be seen if you add Jana’s mother on Facebook 🙂 ).
You must understand the amount of time, effort, moments of discouragement, and moments of great success that have gone into this two year process since Jana’s first surgery. Everyday has not been easy, but beautiful Jana will not give up! Physically, the odds for Jana walking and moving the way some of us are so used to are against her. BUT, as God has revealed, there is no space that His love cannot reach. The way I have gotten to see it, the small time that Jana got to spend at the barn doing horse therapy really magnified her and her family’s faith in the process and journey that God has them in.
God has promised that He will never leave nor forsake us. Oftentimes it is hard to remember this, especially when it may feel like the situations in our lives say otherwise. Comparison is often the thief of our joy. Sometimes, time and waiting get the best of our minds when we don’t feel as if we are making progress the way that we should be. And more times than not, we need our perfect King to remind us of His closeness. The door for Jana to experience God the way she did at the barn was opened when Kaitlyn made her best efforts to fit our therapy program in this summer. With floods of kids coming in each week, Kaitlyn feared that the slot of time and resources to provide this week of therapy for these amazing kids and families would not be available to us. But, she knew she had to make a way. The amount of people that look forward to our horse therapy camp pushed Kaitlyn to fight through limitations and trust in God’s provision. He came through, and with that He showed up.
There are no words to describe the impact that a single moment in God’s presence can have on us. Jana is a testimony to this. After a single day in an atmosphere purely saturated in His presence, the Lord used what many may see as just another form of therapy to divinely intervene on Jana’s behalf. He bestowed on her a confidence and resilience that would defy every odd that seemed to be against her and give her the strength and courage to move in a way that she never has before. That is what is so crazy about life with God! He doesn’t fit in the tiny box we try to put Him in. He is stronger than anything that has ever bound us. His power is all-consuming and NEVER at rest. God is always moving, whether we see it or not. Jana is His beloved. Jana is sought after. Jana has the power of Christ in her. Jana is victorious. Jana is worthy. Jana is stronger than the limitations of cerebral palsy. Jana is a conqueror. Jana is all these things and more because her Father says so.
You can add Carolyn Cleaver Knuckles on Facebook in order to stay updated on Jana’s journey. Please join with us as we fight for Jana in prayer and in love! The power and authority of Christ is in us, and in Him, we are more than conquerors! Blessings!