The Wolf and the Dog

by Amos Smith

In every human heart there is a dogfight between a wolf and a dog.

The wolf represents the wounds we harbor, the betrayals, the humiliations, the scars from childhood through to adult life. The dog represents the shining moments—the beloved people in our lives who make all the difference, our accomplishments, and strengths.

Which animal will win the fight?

It depends on which one you feed.

When I recount the wounds in my life, the travails, the broken relationships, et cetera, brood over them, and analyze every detail, I drag. When I focus on the highest points in my life, the people who were and are utter gifts, my many blessings, when I enunciate the words “thank you,” fresh air rushes in!

The choice is always and forever ours. We can nurse our wounds (feed the wolf) and grow bitter or count our blessings (feed the dog) and get better. Every day every adult in America can think of three reasons not to get out of bed in the morning. And every adult has highpoints that they don’t highlight enough. The people who have made all the difference in my life are lined up on the window sill in my church office. Just gazing on them lifts my spirit.

This choice of emphasis is also true of local news. Do we count the number of under-privileged kids at Keeling School, or do we count the number of kids whose reading scores came up as a direct result of volunteer reading tutors from Casas Adobes Congregational, UCC?

Philippians 4:8 ties in well… “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about these things.”

This may seem fluffy and sentimental… a “count your blessings” feel-good essay. I beg to differ. This is the key to the spiritual warfare of the heart.

There is a fight going on in my heart and yours. Which canine will you feed?