The story of the dark horse begins with a horse longing to be white. White represents purity, splendor, righteousness. It’s what we all long to be. It’s an image to look up to. It’s also all about having an effect on others – making a difference with your life.
To some degree or another, we all want this. We long to make a difference, but making a difference requires us to be different, and therein lies the rub. We are not sure we can pull this off.
So we surround ourselves with whiteness. We hold up white horses as examples to us all. We focus on everything white. We send our foals to whited horse school. We go to meetings about being white, we buy books about it, we choose leaders who are whiter than we are and we glory in one day being like them. We put up reminders about being white all around us, and inspire ourselves with incredible stories of those who have, through great difficulty, become white.
So the dark horse who longs to be white devotes its whole life to trying to “be” white, which, because it is not all white, turns into a false and frustrating task of trying to “appear” white.
When do our efforts at “being” turn into efforts at “appearing?” When we realize that we aren’t what we are trying to be. It’s a subtle but dangerous shift that happens to anyone who genuinely wants to better themselves or make a difference with their life. It’s a shift from a focus on being to a focus on appearing made necessary by the fact that not one of us is all white. It happens to all Christians at some point, and the underlying tragedy in all of this is the falseness it engenders.
In longing for the right thing, we become wrong. The temptation is always to present a false image of ourselves, and since the false image is actually good – it represents all that is good and true and right – we assume the goodness will compensate for its falseness. It doesn’t. It never does.
Here at the Catch, we are committed to being, not appearing to be. Being like Christ is a true and proper goal, but not at the expense of being who we are. Honesty is a much higher value than anything white. In fact, whiteness is not anything we can create or control. What we are trying to be is not up to us, and herein lies our freedom.
Being and following is all that is required.