I was flipping through the notebook I take with me to church (and occasionally use to take notes in), and I found a blurb I had written on the last page. I don’t even remember how long ago it was that I jotted it down. I laughed a little because it seemed kind of silly.
Then, a few days later as I was taking the 45 minute or so drive up to Sierra Pines Church in Oakhurst (where I heard an awesome message) and I was thinking about what I had written and started to add to it. Since it’s suggested that you don’t drive and write, I had to try to keep it all in my noggin. It wasn’t until I got to SPC that I had a chance to scribble it down. Now it’s been neatly typed for your reading pleasure.
“Sometimes our vision is so backwards, that we sometimes we treat GOD like a DOG.”
I know it’s a little silly, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that there are elements of truth.
Sit, UBU, sit. Good dog.Just like we train a dog to sit, roll over, shake, or do “jazz hands” like my sister’s dog, we expect God to follow our commands (instead of the other way around). I’m not sure we can order God to do anything. We can ask like the Bible says to do:
“ ‘So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.’ ” –Luke 11:9 [NIV]
He gives showers of rain to all people, and plants of the field to everyone.” –Zechariah 10:1 [NIV]
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.” –1 John 5:14 [NIV]
We can’t command or demand God to anything just like a child can’t demand anything from his parents. Imagine your child comes up to you and says, “Give me money.” Your hand’s either going to go one of two places—your wallet, or their cheek.
Unlike a dog, God doesn’t do “tricks.”
Holding the leashI’m amazed at how many people I see walking their dogs without a leash. I’m pretty sure it’s against the law in Fresno. Oh wait, it is. I’m also amazed at how many dogs I see walking their owners. A giant mastiff practically dragging some poor lady in her matching track suit and bebe sport hat.
The leash is meant to control the dog so we can prevent it from going wherever it wants. I think sometimes we put God on a leash. We allow God to roam free in regards to our health or our finances. We allow God to sniff all he wants when it comes to our messed up kids, but if he gets too close to something we don’t want him to—we yank on that choke chain! “No! Bad God! Don’t you go sniffing around that porn addiction. Don’t you go near that pride!”
Eventually you’re going to have to take the leash off and let God sniff it all out.
My dog ate my homeworkI know there are several things that get blamed on the dog (right, fellas?). There’s nothing like walking into the kitchen and seeing a broken dish on the ground, or wondering who exactly tracked mud into the living room. “The dog did it!” Yeah, right! The dog’s been in the same spot all day.
It’s common for us to blame our circumstances on God. “Why would God take away my job?” “Why would God take my car?” Death is a big time when we blame God. I’m even guilty of that.
However, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” –James 1:17 [NIV]
I learned this principle a while back: If it’s good, it’s from God. If it’s bad, it’s from the devil. Or, it may actually be your fault. Just sayin’.
One of the first thing dog owners do when company comes over is they lock the dogs in a kennel, or they lock them outside. They get them out of the way so they won’t bother their guests.
We do this with God too. When we’re around certain people we hide God. We hide Him so that it won’t bother whoever we’re with. Once they’re gone, we can let God out and go back to that version of our lives.
Beware of DogThe “Beware of Dog” sign is extremely popular even for people how have chihuahuas instead of real dogs.
It’s a way to warn people that if they get too close to the fence or take a wrong step, that they’ll get mauled and eaten alive. Can you guess where I’m going next?
Yep: We do this with God too. We warn people of all the dangers of not doing what God says instead of telling them all the good that comes from doing it.
“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.”—Psalm 107:1 [NIV]
We preach a gospel of fear rather than of love. God is good. No warning needed.
Table scrapsI’ve heard that you’re not supposed to give your dog people food. I don’t know a single person that abides by that either. Everyone I know feeds their dog from the table or takes home leftovers from a restaurant and gives them to their dog. Wait. Is that why they’re called “doggie bags?”
Anywho, I think we sometimes give God our table scraps, our leftovers. God doesn’t want our leftovers. He wants our best—the best of our time, the best of our worship, the best of ourselves. He’s not an “If-I-Have-Time God,” or a “Right-After-Maury God.”
I just read website that said there are four ways in which we can give God our best:
Service, Obedience, Attitude, Praise.
I’m sure there are many other ways in which we treat GOD like a DOG. Leave some comments and let’s figure out some more.
I did think of one way in which they're similar: