Monday, October 3, 2022
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Listen while you read: "Thou Didst Leave Thy Throne"1 (Lyrics)

My grandfather led his horse, Nellie, to a large area that needed to be tilled, and he prepared her to plow for the garden. I observed her as she plodded along, looking straight ahead. With my thumb hooked over my coverall pocket, and the other securing my straw hat on my head in the breeze, I watched Nellie move ahead. I said, "Grandpa, take those black things away from Nellie's eyes so that she can see better."

Grandpa answered, "We need the blinkers so Nellie doesn't look to the left or right, but straight ahead, and pays attention to where she is going." I followed alongside while Nellie slowly pulled in a straight row to till furrows into the rich soil in readiness for planting. As my five-year-old self padded along, stomping dirt clods with my bare feet, I thought for a minute about what he had said, and commented proudly, "You don't need to put blinkers on me. I know just exactly where I am going." I know that he must have shaken his head and smiled at the innocent confidence.

Proverbs 4:27a – Do not turn to the right or the left. (NKJV)

Grandpa knew that straight furrows were conducive to his purpose, so he prepared the horse by taking away the chance to be distracted. It was much easier to direct Nellie to plow straight rows by giving her a narrow and focused vision. Likewise, God knows that we need help to keep our life on the straight and narrow pathway, so He provided Scripture and the Holy Spirit to act as our blinkers.

Matthew 7:13-14 – Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. (NIV)

We human beings are curious, imaginative, and creative. Our thoughts wander. We soon learn that we need to be reined in to focus on God's purpose at hand and the goals to reach it, based on prayer and the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Sometimes, we think as a child and say, "I know exactly where I am going." For believers, that can be a spiritually destructive way to think. God knows that we need blinkers to direct our attention from childlike self-assurance to Christlike confidence.

Do you ever veer off course? If you are a believer in Christ, pray and ask the Holy Spirit to make you wise in this matter. Then, listen and obey His prompting.

Prayer: Dear Lord, we appreciate all the tools that You provide for the maturation that we need to reach the mark that You have set for us. Help us, Holy Spirit, to keep our heart, mind, and soul focused straight ahead to Your wisdom, and then to obey the instruction, to Your glory and honour. Amen.

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About the author:

Karen Milam <>
Penn Valley, California, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Beautiful and simple Karen. Blessings.

    Thanks for the encouraging words, Karen.

    Thank you, Karen. Lord, give me blinkers!!

    Thank you, Karen. It was a beautiful reminder!

    Good one Karen, and so true.

    On the other hand we need to look around us to attend the needs of others.

    Thank you, Karen, for sharing this encouraging devotional with us. May God continually guide us to fulfill the purpose He has for us. Blessings.

    Karen , that was an awesome Devotional today. I really enjoyed it . It really makes me strive to stay on course.
    (Ontario Canada)

    Karen, I thought the devotion you wrote for today was a good reminder for us. Distractions can be a burden at times.
    Thank you.
    (Ontario, Can.)

    Good morning, Karen,
    It seems that there are so many reasons why we can go “Off Course.” Good advice for all of us this morning. Thank you for your good words.

    Karen. Thank you for this good devotional. So many examples that clearly help teach us spiritual truths come from the hands-on everyday world of farm life and sustenance. Jesus used them alot, and we still can relate in our modern world. Today farmers set their GPS to program their plows on the predetermined rows.

    Thanks, Karen, for another of your devotionals. You have written a very good analogy of the blinkers helping the horse make a straight row and how God provides us with scripture and the Holy Spirit to keep us on a straight and narrow path. Following that path laid out for us certainly gives us a more joyous and productive daily life. Blessings for your writings and for a pleasant day.

    Dear Karen,
    Thank you for the wisdom and great lessons you always share!
    Today my Husband rented a Slit-Seeder. (It cuts slits into the ground and plants Grass Seed.)
    I needed to talk to him and had a hard time getting his attention – he kept looking straight ahead – like your Grandpa’s Horse with the Blinkers.
    Yes, I want to be that way with how I follow the LORD each day. It is my prayer also for others. I love learning new lessons. Thanks Karen.

    Good morning, Karen,
    It is so true that we can be tempted to stray from the path that God would like us to take. Luckily, we don’t have to wear “blinkers” to help us but can rely on the Holy Spirit if we seek and then obey.
    Nice to hear a little of your childhood and that you had a special bond with your grandfather. My grandfather also was a farmer, but I didn’t know him then. He was a gardener by the time I came along and he spent many hours in his garden growing vegetables for grandma to cook with.
    Thank you for the reminder to seek guidance and to then follow it. This is not always the easiest path so we also need a strong faith to not falter along the way. Blessings and joy.

    Thanks Karen – right on!

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