Tag Archives: wisdom

Guide Dog Tales Vol. 20


By Carolyn Dale Newell

“Yes!” tells Iva she did a good job and a treat is making its way to her mouth. Iva had planted us firmly on the curb. We paused for traffic. Birds sang praises to God, and the scent of freshly cut grass filled the air.

“Iva, forward.” She turned left, and I redirected her with the leash, reassuring her I was correct. I wondered if I really was right. A few steps down the sidewalk hinted that we were in new territory. Suddenly, without warning, several tree branches slapped my face, revealing it was definitely the wrong block. I wish I could read Iva’s mind as I directed her to turn around. Was she thinking, “I wish you would make up your mind, Mom.”

Or was an “I told you so.” In her thoughts?

Undoubtedly, I had lost track of the streets as I counted, and we turned one block early.

I am always amazed by Iva’s intelligence. I was surprised to find Labrador Retrievers at number seven on a list of the ten most intelligent breeds of dogs according to an article on pets.webmd.com. Border Collies took first place.

Are some animals smarter than humans? Could we be reaping the results of a dummy-down society?

I have commanded Iva to go to the bench at the front of Walmart when we are in the back of the store. With no more commands, Iva takes me to that bench. In our driveway, I can suggest we need to check the mail, and right to the mailbox Iva goes. Our mailbox is located in an odd place, not near our driveway.

Four days ago, I taught Iva to stop at a pothole, so we can avoid it. Today was the first time we walked that route since then, and she handled it perfectly.

When Iva guides me, she rarely misses a step or curb. People forget. I have had plenty of stumbles depending on humans.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. (James 1:5-6 NKJV)

Do we not ask God for wisdom, or do we doubt the understanding He gives us? Have we cluttered our minds with too many priorities, allowing things to slip past us? Yes, yes, and yes.

Blind people must remember an incredible amount of information. Here is a small list of things I need to keep in mind that sighted people don’t need:

  • Clothes in my closet are organized from right to left in this order: black, white, yellow, red… freezer, pork on top, hamburger second, chicken third …
  • Again freezer, lima beans on the left, fourth bin down.
  • Computer – “Alt” plus” S” sends an email.
  • A million more computer keyboard commands.
  • A mental map of everywhere I walk.

Do you remember the commercial with a frying pan and eggs? It demonstrated that a mind is a terrible thing to waste. Cluttered thoughts, unnecessary trivia, and busyness has taken up precious space. Christians can improve memory and keep our minds sharp with Bible verse memorization. Why not start today?


Apple of His Eye


By Carolyn Dale Newell

Keep me as the apple of Your eye; Hide me under the shadow of Your wings,

Psalm 17:8 NKJV

The car passed in front of us. One more step, and Iva and I would have been hit. On the sidewalk, I consoled the man in the wheelchair. He groaned in disbelief. His attempt to stop the car had been ignored, but his loud warning for me to stop planted my feet firmly. Iva, my guide dog, had put her brakes on simultaneously.

I explained that God would deal with those people, but he had been present today because God had a purpose. God protected us using this gentleman.

I thank God for today, but how many times have I complained at His hand of protection? Think of the countless times we run late. How many of these kept us from accidents? One that I know for sure. How many cancellations have sent me pouting rather than praising God for the unknown avoided catastrophe?

Can you recall the times when God has been your shield, your fortress, your refuge, or your strong tower of safety? Now praise Him for the times you never realized you were kept safe under His wings. The times you once grumbled about.

Commentators believe David was running from Saul when he prayed for God to keep him safe like the apple of His eye. David sought to be covered by the wings of the Almighty.

Christian, like David, we have an enemy – Satan. At times, he plays havoc with our lives. However, old slew foot gets his chain jerked by God. He only allows the devil to go so far with God’s precious children.

The apple of the eye is the pupil, the most sensitive part of the human body. We shelter our eyes for the preservation of sight, but one poke in that delicate spot adds a new meaning to sensitivity.

The pupil is a unique part of human anatomy. It constricts and expands to allow the right amount of light into the eye. When our surroundings grow dark, we need more light. Physically, the pupil dilates to allow much-needed light. Spiritually, in dark times, God gives us the necessary illumination we need.

Part of our Lord’s safety net includes His rays of wisdom. He shields believers with beams of understanding concerning the enemy. He covers us with the believer’s armor.

My mom saved some of my baby clothes including a pink pair of pants with a red apple with “apple of my eye” embroidered across one leg. I wasn’t only Mom’s little darling. I am my heavenly Father’s little darling also. Whoever touches me has touched the apple of His eye.

Pray protection over your life, over your family, and over your church. Thank Him for His watchful care. Trust Him as He guides us day and night. Rest in the shadow of His wings, as the apple of His eye.

Father, thank You for the many times we fail to appreciate Your hand of protection. We realize we need Your shield more than we know. Watch over us as we are out and about today. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


Read Psalm 17.


Do you pray daily for protection? Most of us ask for travel mercies when we travel outside of our normal surroundings, but trouble can find us anywhere. In what ways do you need to change your prayer habits concerning safe-keeping?

Copyright 2017 Carolyn Dale Newell.