Posted by: Jim E | February 6, 2011

Secretariat…”Oh Happy Day”…And Rejoicing Along The Way…

I know very little about horse racing…I do know that the first horse to cross the finish line wins…but beyond that I’m kinda lost…now stop right there…when I say I know little about something…I mean just that…but I don’t mean, I don’t know anything about that subject…what I do mean is that I am not an expert about horses or horse racing…the old adage “Jack of all trades, master of none”…that would be me…I always have been an observer of people and what they do…and have a treasure trove of questions to ask someone who is an expert…so watching Secretariat last night would not make me an expert on horse racing any more than watching a builder frame up a house would make me builder…but it did bring back all the time I was around horses when I was young…and the people who were there when I did…they knew “stuff”…I observed and asked questions…and learned “stuff”…

Horses are huge animals…they can do just about anything they want…I am amazed that we can control them at all…it may look easy for the jockeys to ride them…because horses are so beautiful as they run…but being on one as they run is another story…I can’t imagine how those jockeys, who are small men already, feel atop those thoroughbreds (because thoroughbreds are very large horses)…I know they are taking their life in their hands as they race around the track…and seeing the movie last night certainly allows you that feeling…the audience is allowed to feel what its like to be on the horse…the dirt, the sounds, the speed, the power of the animals…

The movie is about a woman (Penny Chenery Tweedy played by Diane Lane) who, in 1973, was trying to save her family and the family farm…though she had grown up on the farm and they raised horses for racing…yet she was no expert…but she had this dream and was inspired to do what she did…to go beyond what she thought she could do…the movie touches the heart in a way that cannot be put in words…there are lots of scenes that are wonderful…and there are lots of principles of life touched…but the one scene I love the most is when she was turned down by all the investors she had called…and she was at the door and looking out at Secretariat being washed down by his groom Eddie Sweat (played by Nelsan Ellis)…a Gospel song was playing in the background…”O Happy Day”…(I don’t have that particular clip but I have the song as background of some scenes from the film…you will enjoy it…I guarantee)…but first, the words to that old song…really the chorus, “Happy day, happy day, When Jesus washed my sins away! He taught me how to watch and pray, And live rejoicing every day;” …(this particular version of the song was by the Edwin Hawkins singers from 1969…it was a “hit record” that year)…

As Penny looked out on the horse and his groom…she walked out, not saying a word…listening, watching, thinking…and the next scene has her in the barn…and at that time she makes up her mind…and as the others come in the barn…she turns and says something like this, “I don’t care how many times they tell us we can’t do it. I’m not giving up.”….and then something like this, as she uses words from the old Gospel song, “And from now on we are going to live rejoicing everyday.”…now, how about that YouTube clip…

The story is really about showing the capabilities within us that are beyond what we think we have…because life is about finding how far we can go, how fast we can go…and we will never know until we run, until we try…

O Happy Day, the song goes…life is full of challenges…and we all face our own…just this week one of our neighbors died after a long illness…and that will be a challenge to those who are left behind…this week on Facebook someone posted that she was in ICU with a family but upstairs a co-worker had just given birth to a baby…and she mentioned the circle of life…all of life is a challenge…illness, loss of job, new born baby, a marriage, child going off to college, just having a bad day, a new job…we can put down hundreds of happenings in our lives…in fact from the smallest, like a homework assignment to a car accident or more…all of life is a challenge…and we don’t know what it will be…but most of life is so good…and so wonderful…that we too can sing…”O Happy Day”…never give up…and to find out how far, how fast we can go…and we won’t know until we try…

I take from all this one thing for sure…and that is I want to “live rejoicing every day”…so, go ahead play the video again…it is worth the click and the listen…O Happy Day!!!…

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Responses

  1. Thanks again for your insight it always brightens my day. Take care and have a great week…. 🙂


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