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Dog Lessons

25But Jesus called them to Himself and said, "You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great men exercise authority over them. 26It is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant, 27and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave; 28just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many." - Matthew 20: 25-28(New American Standard Version)

One day, as I was sitting in a restaurant with some friends, I was listening to everyone talk and looking out the window. Across the way, there was this house with a large brown dog. Most mornings the owners open up the door to allow the dog to go out. The dog always returns to the owners with the morning newspaper which he picked up off the lawn. This particular morning I saw the owner open the door and the dog came our as usual. However this time the owner came out also. Together they walked over to the two newspapers that were on the lawn. Since this was Sunday the newspapers were loaded with advertising and therefore very heavy. But, instead of the owner picking up both of the papers he allowed the dog to pick up one while he picked up the other. The dog then pranced along to the door with his head held high and his tail wagging. I then thought to myself that that was one happy dog. But, why was he happy? Then the thought occurred to me that it was because he was being of service to his human. Dogs are like that, they just want to be of service to their humans. Then the bible verse came to mind; “… the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve…” WOW!!! The dogs are doing something that Jesus told us to do!

I also thought of the verse from the book of James 2:17 which says; 17Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.” (New American Standard Version) Now, wait a minute! We are saved by faith (Ephesians 2:8), but without works it is dead! The dog has faith in his/her human and he/she brings it to life through service (works). Could the dog be teaching us a lesson? Could God be using the dog to teach us something? Maybe we should try putting our faith to work and use it to serve others. Maybe if we all followed the lesson taught by dogs we might end up being happier. Just a little something to think about…

James Krauss

Published in the Lenten Sunday Bulletin of Kemble Memorial United Methodist Church, Lent 2011.
Also used for Chapel Devotional at South Jersey Christian Academy on February 6, 2012


Up-dated January 22, 2012
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