Friday, November 6, 2009

Straight Ahead

I remember seeing them quite often on horses. Especially on horses that were in busy places. They are nothing more than a pair of leather flaps that attach to the horse’s bridle. Blinders. Although they are tiny in relation to the size of the horse, they serve a very important function. Blinders help the horse focus on what is in front of it, eliminating things in the horse’s peripheral vision that might cause it to become distracted.

Growing up in Michigan, I had the opportunity to travel to Mackinaw Island on several occasions. If you’re familiar with this beautiful destination, you’re well aware that horses and bicycles are the only accepted methods of transportation on the island. For me, it not only made it memorable, but also lots of fun! Remembering the exhilaration of biking around the island with its gorgeous scenery has me wanting to book my family’s summer vacation. All along the route, horse-drawn carriages would go by with their friendly passengers waving a greeting. You guessed it! All of the horses were wearing blinders.

At first, it may seem unnecessary and maybe even a bit cruel for a horse to wear blinders. But the more I got to thinking about it, those who put blinders on their horses were doing it ultimately to protect the animals. If the horse is only able to see the path straight ahead, it won’t wander from the path into possible danger. Wow! The same is true for me. God’s word provides spiritual ‘blinders,’ or instructions that will help me stay on the path He’s prepared for me, preventing me from being distracted by things that are potentially harmful.

King Solomon gives us good advice in Proverbs 4:23, “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life” (KJV). It’s important to guard our hearts. The things that we look at, and the things that we hear have a tremendous influence on what we say and do. We can’t live our lives with our eyes closed and our ears plugged. So just how do we put on spiritual ‘blinders?’

We can establish some boundaries and borders in our lives that reflect the principles of God’s word. Carefully thinking through what we’ll allow ourselves to see, hear, and do. Determining how we’ll react in challenging situations. Through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, David penned scripture that can help us. He prayed for God’s help to walk in such a way, that he’d be blameless. “I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me. A froward heart shall depart from me: I will not know a wicked person. Whoso privily slandereth his neighbor, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer. Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me: he that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me” (Psalm 101:3-6).

We have a choice to make. What will we allow ourselves to look at? What will we listen to? What will we act on? David decided to avoid looking at wicked things. He removed himself from those who gossiped. He chose to hang around with those who were godly and even hired them as his servants. If we set up godly boundaries in these areas of our lives, we’ll have a much better chance of staying on the path and avoiding those situations that will cause us to be distracted. We’ll have a godly legacy to leave our children.

Begin establishing godly borders today, knowing that His plan for you is success: “But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (I Corinthians 15:57).

Can you think of a time when your spiritual 'blinders' helped you stay on the right path? I’d love to hear about it!


  1. Maria this is beautiful. I thank God for what He is doing through you.

    My spiritual blinders have saved me too many times to count. Staying fit in the Word helps remember this important message. It helps to "walk worthy of the calling.."

  2. Tamika - What a privilege to be entrusted with His word and what a challenge to walk worthy of His calling! Thanks for sharing. Have a beautiful weekend!

  3. I'm trying to keep my blinders on especially with my writing. Trying not to sway to the right or left, to finally accomplish what's been rooted in my heart and what I truly know God wants for my life. Thanks for this post Maria!
    Always so uplifting!

  4. Ellie - Good for you! I know God will bless you as you follow Him one step @ a time! You're an encouragement!:)

  5. One of my most meditated verses is:
    “Turn my eyes from worthless things,
    and give me life through your word.”
    Psalm 119: 37
    I pray we stay on the narrow path...keeping our eye on the prize...and encourage one another consistently along the journey!
    God bless!

  6. Cherie - Thanks for sharing your verse! Know that you've definitely been an encouragement to me!! Have a wonderfully blessed weekend! :)

  7. There have been many times I have been grateful for God's provision of blinders, lovingly placed on me by my Godly parents. Just like the horse who relies on someone else to put the blinders on, I can say Mum and Dad were not negligent in keeping a Godly focus in our home. Now that I am a parent I want to show the same faithfulness. Even when they are not sure why, I tell my children we live by God's standards which exist for our good because He loves us and because we want to honor Him. Living any other way means we miss out on God's best for us. :)

    Thanks for the timely lesson expressed so beautifully Maria. Keep up the excellent work. Your devotions are always uplifting and inspiring :)

  8. Hi Maria,
    Thank you for changing the nature of the award you gave me. I like this one SO much better! I wasn't totally comfortable with the other one and the overtures that it had to it! So I LOVE the new design beauty of the new one! Thank you for doing that!

  9. Dorothy - Thanks for sharing your godly heritage! Even though they may not always understand the reason for the 'blinders,' I'm sure your children will be very grateful for your guidance and will "rise up and call you blessed!" God bless you!

  10. Great post! I'm glad I stumbled across your blog...and thanks for stopping by the directory. My personal blog is Songs From My Journey.

  11. I always thought it would get easier to avoid the sin traps when I "grew up," but it's just as easy to feel inferior, grow envious, or talk trash about someone now that I'm an adult. Yes, we do need blinders!

  12. Deborah - So glad you stopped by! I'll definitely take a look @ yours. Enjoy your weekend!

    Jill - Good point! As adults we need to be sure we're not fooling ourselves. The outside may look good, but God sees those hidden things on the inside. Thanks for sharing!

  13. After reading your blog, I sure want to visit Mackinaw Island. Sounds very interesting.

  14. Saw you on Debororah's blog. Thought I would stop by. So glad I did. Makes me want to visited the Island, also.

  15. Theresa - I would highly recommend visiting Mackinaw Island if you ever have the opportunity! It's absolutely beautiful! It's located in MI, sort of between the upper and lower peninsulas. They ferry people across Lake Huron to the island - there are lots of quaint shops, restaurants and you can tour Fort Mackinac. For more info, stop by their website:

    Aliene - Welcome! So glad you stopped by! I look forward to visiting your site as well! You'll definitely want to check out the Island's website: if you are ever in the vicinity. It's well worth the trip!!