The first to smile

A woman who has been through much shares how she finds meaning – in the little things and the big

Jo Fisher
Jo Fisher

Smiling rodeo rider Jo Fisher says she found her new life after she realized how empty her existence was even as a barrel racing champion, and bought herself a Bible to read.

"It was not one single event that drew me to God," Jo recalls. "I just pondered that there had to be more."

Once she started to read her Bible, she says she realized there was a big difference between just knowing about God from her Sunday school lessons as a child and really knowing Him personally.

One of Jo's most life-changing experiences was the birth of her disabled daughter. Jo calls this experience a blessing, "not because she was disabled but because of how beautiful a person we were given.

"I watched a little girl live her life in this world so totally unselfishly that it would embarrass me to see how shallow most people live their lives from day to day. God has been my strength throughout these years."

Her daughter tragically died in mid-2010.

Now raising three other children and on the road much of the time with her rodeo rider husband Eddy, Jo says God is always a part of her life. "I just have to make sure I don't get too busy to spend time with Him," she says.

Jo says her faith and hope in God mean "everything" to her. "I could not imagine living without having the trust— which faith is a part of— God has my life in his hands."

And Jo has a simple philosophy on how to make barrel racing – and life – more enjoyable: "Be the first to smile. Be the first to forgive. Be the first to congratulate. Be the first to take action. Be the last to complain, the last to frown, and the last to give up."

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