Categories
Christian Blog resilience

Dog Gone It!

We have a dog in our neighborhood that’s a fence jumper. Every so often, even with the gate shut, he magically appears in the backyard. He’s friendly enough, but we worry what might happen if he gets in when our little dog is out.

We thought we had the problem solved. Our super-athletic trespasser liked to jump the one section of our fence that was four feet tall, so we replaced it with a six foot wooden privacy fence. We now have a tall fence around our whole backyard. “That should do it,” I told my wife.

But wouldn’t you know, one day we looked out and there he was– standing on the back patio laughing at himself in the window. What kind of dog gets over a six foot privacy fence?!

This has to be yet another metaphor for life. We build fences around our circumstances to control them. And then, when something breaches our puny perimeter, we build better ones.

Yet sometimes, no matter how hard we try, IT still happens. They make LifeProof cases for phones, but not for the human condition. And when something jumps the ‘fence’ and comes to the window, it’s easy to feel violated, unsafe and unsure about the future.

Enter God, the creator and sustainer of the universe, who most certainly understands humans. 

He became one.

And, as it turns out, He’s a fence builder too.

You hem me in–behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me.

Psalm 139:5 (NIV)

King David doesn’t mention sideways, but surely the Almighty has that covered as well.😀🙏

So friend, can we agree that whatever we’re facing right now—be it good, bad or ugly—God saw it coming and knows what to do about it?

His Word is His bond.

Kind reader, thank you for enduring my daily posts for one week. After today, I will be back to my normal schedule.

🙏❤️ prayers and love.


Photo by Dallas Reedy on Unsplash


This post first appeared on my blog in September of 2020.

Categories
Christian Blog spiritual warfare

Just Beyond the Gate

I heard them the moment I opened the back door at 3 am. Our geriatric schnauzer scurried to his favorite spot for a potty break, but I hesitated.

It was a whole pack of coyotes, yipping and howling, seemingly just on the other side of our six foot privacy fence. Using an exposed board as a step, I peeked over–into the pre dawn mist. Nothing.

Cooper, our little dog, paid his wild cousins no mind. Yet their eerie cries were unsettling. The only thing between us and them was a few hundred yards of open ground and a wooden fence. “Hurry up, buddy!”

Safely back inside, I remembered this cool product I found online called the Coyote Roller.

It’s a long piece of pipe that rolls under the paws of athletic interlopers. Thus, any frisky varmints who try to clear the fence are quickly returned to the ground.

Back in a warm bed, listening to a now snoring schnauzer, I pondered: “Is there a spiritual equivalent to the Coyote Roller?”

I found one a few hours later, over breakfast, sans coyotes. Revelation chapter 12 tells about a war in heaven. Michael and his angels fight against the dragon, satan and his angels, and prevail. Consequently, the devil and his buddies have to relocate. A voice comes over the loud speaker: “The accuser of our brothers has been hurled down.” Verse 11 reveals the power behind it:

They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.

Revelation 12:11 (NIV)

Kind reader, the blood of Christ, the truths he taught, and our own resolve to hold onto faith, are more than enough to keep any “coyotes” out of the back yard. As a former pastor of mine liked to say, “If you’re willing to stand forever, you won’t have to stand for long.”

Thank you for reading. 🙏❤️


The first photo is by my friend, Gary Fultz. Check out his excellent nature shots here.

Categories
Christian Blog thankfulness

Thankful for Thorns

There was once a godly woman who lived in my little town. She was twice widowed and confined to a wheelchair, yet had the sweetest Christian spirit.

Most days, Mrs. Frieda never ventured outside her home, but friends lined up to see her or called her on the phone. People flocked to this dear sister because she had the “Peace that passes all understanding” ( Philippians 4:7).

Most of us can probably think of a fellow believer who stayed grateful to God despite challenging circumstances. There’s something extra special about the unshakeable faith of God’s holiest servants.

So what’s the secret?

I never asked Mrs. Freida, but she surely would have pointed me to biblical passages such as Colossians 3:1-3, about the life that is “hidden with Christ in God,” or Psalm 91:1 where David rested in the “shadow of the Almighty.”

Remain in me, and I will remain in you.

Jesus- John 15:4 (NIV)

If other followers of Christ kept faith in God–no matter what–then you and I can too! We have the same resources available to us as the Apostle Paul, who thanked God for his “thorn in the flesh.”

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

Paul- 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)

Kind reader, any experience which draws us closer to God is a good thing. By His grace may we say in our frailty, “Lord, thank you for this thorn!”

🙏❤️

Portions of this post first appeared as This Thorn, on February 17, 2021.