The Wonderful World of the Wiener Dog, Pt. 4

This is the fourth post in a series about life through the eyes of a wiener-dog owner

Posted: February 24, 2011 in Inspirational

 Okay, contrary to any heretofore claims by yours truly, Boomer isn’t perfect. In fact, he has a serious problem (well, as serious as you can take a problem that involves a dog shaped like an empty toilet paper tube with legs). His problem is that he has a tendency to fixate. Now, when I say tendency, understand the understatement involved… sort of like saying San Antonio has a tendency to be humid. For instance, if you begin to play fetch with him, he totally fixates on that activity, to the exclusion of being conscious of anything else happening on the planet. When you are ready to stop, you can try to ignore him but he’ll come drop the toy on your foot and whine; next, you can place it on a counter top that he can’t reach. In answer to this, he will jump up over and over whining and barking at the counter. You may also attempt to hide it. This, too, avails little, as he will walk around the room whining and sniffing the air to ascertain where his toy has gone. No matter what other activity or treat I wish to give him at this point, he is totally fixated on the one thing. Sometimes, I just want him to sit with me and allow me to pet him and enjoy his company. Alas, he is totally in one-track mode. In fact, the only way to break this obsession is to hide the object in a different room until he forgets it. Luckily, while his body is long, his memory is short.

Here again, I see a picture of myself (and I suspect many of you, too). I have a tendency to obsess, don’t you? Whether it is a good thing or a bad one, the result is similar. Perhaps I may catch a glimpse of something God wants to do in my future and at that moment I become fixated on the dream of what is to come. I have seen this often in the lives of young men and women who are called to some area of ministry. Once they get a vision of where they are headed, they suddenly lose their willingness to stay in their place and remain faithful as they are learning the lessons that will serve them well in the future. We are also prone to begin to cherish the ministry more than the presence of God. Just like me, God may want to hold us and enjoy us for a while; and, just like Boomer, we can only think of chasing that rubber bone. Destiny can be a powerful obsession. So can religion. At one point, Jesus tells the Pharisees, “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you pay tithe of mint and anise and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone.” (Matthew 23:23 – NKJV). In other words, He is saying, you get all the religious rituals and requirements right, but you miss the main point. In some respects it was the same thing He told Martha when she complained of all the work that needed to be done while Mary sat at Jesus’ feet. He said, “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:41,42 – NIV)

Bad things can be equally powerful in their ability to consume us. Whether it is financial worries, health problems, family issues, or any number of other things, we can fixate on those things just as easily… with even more damaging consequences. Jesus chides His disciples throughout His time on earth to not worry, and He often questions where their faith has gone. I think I can easily slip into the trap of totally ignoring a loving, doting Heavenly Father’s presence as I focus all my attention on those unpaid bills or that unfavorable doctor’s report. Sometimes, it seems God is forced to do the same thing I have to do with Boomer – hide the object of my obsession until I forget about it. Unfortunately, my memory is much longer than Boomer’s, so this is not the best option for me. I do see it happen in our lives, though, as those dreams we have of a great destiny seem to vanish into mid-air. I think this was the test God was giving Abraham when He asked him to sacrifice Isaac. That was God’s promise of Abraham’s destiny of being a great nation. God’s question was, do you love me more than the promise I gave you? Abraham passed the test with flying colors. How about us?

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