Writer uses her dachshund to discuss her faith

Published 12:00 am Sunday, June 1, 2014

Mandy Lawrence, who lives in Lexington and loves dogs and God, has written and published a new book, “Wisdom from Wilbur: How My Dog Has Brought Me Closer to God.”
On the cover is a cute picture of her dachshund, Wilbur.
Lawrence has had many dogs over the years, but Wilbur is the first dog she’s had since her marriage, and Wilbur is treated very well.
She’s had her share of mistakes, disappointments and tragedies, but Lawrence is astute enough to make connections, to find solace in the love of God, even when life seems turned upside down and inside out.
She sees analogies in the dog’s unquestioning love and devotion to his people. So she decided to share what she has learned.
The result is a book full of advice for struggling Christians, and for comfortable and confirmed Christians who realize they, and life, are not perfect.
Lawrence uses a number of stories about Wilbur. She writes about a thirsty Wilbur clanking his water bowl in another room, and clanking and clanking, because Lawrence is sick and doesn’t feel like moving from the couch. Getting no response, little Wilber drags the mat and both bowls to the couch to make his point clear.
Lawrence uses this to teach the lesson that loving someone and caring for them isn’t easy, but it feels so good when you do.
At another point she tells about Wilbur’s unfortunate encounter with a pack of gum. It seems to have disappeared, wrappers, foil and all, into his stomach. Poor Wilbur earns a trip to the vet, who gives him something so the dog will vomit, and he does, over and over, turning sad eyes to Lawrence. She feels horrible about his suffering, but she knows this will save his life. She’s not angry at him, despite the cost of his treatment, and she realizes this is the way God must look at his children who sin. He will always forgive.
Lawrence uses Scripture throughout. She pens prayers at the end of some of her chapters, and as the book continues relies more on her own experiences and those of the people around her. She uses a gentle tone to explain what she has discovered and relates that to other people of faith.
The author is also a hospice nurse, which says much about her patience and desire to share this message.
Perhaps the biggest challenge she discusses in the book is the electrocution death of her cousin, Lauren, also her godchild. Photos of Wilbur and Lauren bring the book to a close. Proceeds from sales will go to the charity Lauren’s Fund and the Humane Society.
Lawrence will meet people and sign her book on Saturday, June 7, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., at Literary Bookpost & Just the Thing, 110 S. Main St.
Lawrence has a website, wisdomfromwilbur.com.