I have a ten pound Yorkie named ‘Gracie Lu Freebush” (name from Ms. Congeniality). She loves you so much she will lick your face off if you will let her. She is so excited to see you she just can’t help but pee on your shoes when you walk through the door. She doesn’t like to be down on the floor when you are so far up in the air so she has this habit of clawing at your pants until you are so annoyed you pick her up (and lick, lick, lick follows).
You can learn a lot from a dog.
My first thought is this . . . do we act this way around God? I mean, if He walked in your door today would you want to jump in His arms and lick His face? Would you be so excited you just might pee your pants? Interesting thought. I mean, God wants that kind of excitement out of us right? Yes, we need to be in awe of Him, but He also wants us to be GIDDY about His presence, His word, and His revelations.
I didn’t think I would start this post that way; it just came out . Maybe it will be important in the end. We shall see. I really sat down to tell you a story about Gracie Lu Freebush.
They say dogs don’t know what they did wrong unless you catch them right in the act. I mean, if they pee in the living room, surely they don’t remember that act when you find it two hours later — right? At least I have been told before, “don’t rub your dog’s nose in it unless it has just happened.” I think that advice is about as good as a rotten tomato in your Halloween candy.
Gracie Lu Freebush remembers EXACTLY what she did. And this is where the story begins.
Dak and I made soaps for my mom for Christmas a few days back. I had taken all of the soaps upstairs except for one lone soap, made with coffee grounds, because it hadn’t quite cooled. When I popped it out of the mold the next day, I wrapped it in Saran Wrap and put it on the stairs so I could take it up later. Then I left for bible study.
When I got home, Gracie Lu Freebush greeted me at the door, peeing, scratching my leg, and licking as normal. I walked away to do something and when I returned to the living room I happened to look at the couch where my son was laying with Gracie Lu curled around his feet. I noticed Gracie Lu’s violent tremors at the same moment Dak said, “Gracie is shaking, Mom.”
Maybe she needs to go outside, I thought. So I called to her to leave her warm abode and walk outside with me. She did – nothing changed.
Then it dawned on me.
Gracie Lu was scared – of me. She had done something bad and she knew it. She knew it so well she was shaking her furry bootie off.
I walked back inside with new understanding. Almost instantaneously I see the mutilated soap on the living room floor. I turn to Gracie Lu. She runs away, still shaking, with guilt written all over her face. My dog had just digested about two ounces of soap.
I go in search of the vomit. Sure enough, there is a huge pile in Dak’s room.
Why would a dog eat soap? I mean, it couldn’t have tasted good. But there were coffee grounds in there. Perhaps the smell of the “good” overpowered the taste of the “bad?”
As I am cleaning up the mess I knew there HAD to be a lesson here! And I think there are two. . .
First, how often do we accept the “bad” in situations, TV-shows, movies, conversations, and society because we perceive we get something “good” out of it? How often do we compromise by eating the “soap” just to enjoy a little “coffee?”
I bet if we stopped and thought about it, we would say, “A lot.”
And when we open our mouth after being influenced by those situations, TV-shows, movies, conversations and society do we “upchuck” some of the “soap” we have ingested in other conversations, at functions, among friends?
You bet we do. “We are what we eat.”
What we need to be doing is feasting on God’s Word. “Open your mouth wide and I will fill it with good things.” Psalm 81:10 We need to be critical of things entering our homes that are “soapy” because that soap influences our lives, even if we convince ourselves it doesn’t.
Second, how often do we run from God because of the “soap” we have digested? How often do we feel “unlovable” because of the stuff we have done? We are what we believe. And if we believe ourselves tainted, not understanding that Jesus has washed us clean, we see an angry God and not a loving God.
And if we believe that, when God’s presence comes, we want to run and hide and not jump into His arms, lick is face, and pee in excitement. We are scared.
You can learn a lot from a dog.
We can’t escape the world (the soap), but Jesus says to be “in the world” not “of the world.” That soap has a tricky way of getting into our system with the coffee. The soap has a sneaky way of overpowering the coffee if we don’t control it. And the soap we ingest has a funny way of making us uncomfortable around God.
So the answer? Let’s spit out the soap. Coffee is so much better without it.
I DARE you this week. Find some soap and spit it out! It may be painful, but it must be done. Then, sit back and enjoy the coffee.
“Do not be conformed to this world (the soap) but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:2
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