Tag Archives: Animals

Observations from a Middle-Georgia Pastorate: Food and Fur

It’s still a work in progress, but take a look at my new writing spot!

It’s not the most comfortable seating position (in relation to the keyboard), but I think I’ll get used to it… Oh, cool! I just lowered my chair and the keyboard’s in a better position! Sweet!

Anyway, it’s been a really long while since I sat down to write a brand new post, so here it goes!

Culture Shocks

Moving to a new city and a new culture brings with it a multitude of “shocks.” You’d think that a distance of 250 miles (201 as the crow flies) wouldn’t make that much of a difference, but you’d be wrong. Life in rural middle Georgia compared to metropolitan Chattanooga (Gig City) is totally different, and some adjustments are easier than others.

For instance, back in the Chattanooga area there are tons of restaurants, and not just the fast-food variety. There, for instance, you can find several very good barbecue restaurants, all within a few miles of each other. Yet, when my wife and I decided we wanted to find some barbecue down here, we had to drive 45 minutes to a place that was open only on Fridays and Saturdays, had outdoor bathrooms, had no air conditioning, and the floor was sawdust.

I asked a lady sitting quietly nearby, “So, tell me about this place.” With matter-of-fact tone and an attitude that gave me the impression she didn’t enjoy strangers asking stupid questions, she replied, “My daddy woke up one day and decided he wanted to sell barbecue, so he did.”

Hey, the food wasn’t bad, but even more, you didn’t have to worry about slipping and falling!

As we find other culinary establishments to visit, I’ll be sure to keep you updated. Should you come visit and get tired of my wife’s cooking, you’ll be better aware of your options.

Critter Shocks

We left not only our daughters behind when we moved away, but we left two little dogs we loved, too. However, even though I have no wagging tails to great me when I walk in the door; there are plenty of wagging tails on the outside.

Imagine waking up your first morning in a new house, sitting down on your front porch to enjoy the cool, misty air while you sip a cup of coffee and read your Bible. Then, imagine looking up to see two dogs trotting down the quiet two-lane road, one with a shoe hanging from its mouth by the strings. With only the sound of a few birds singing in the trees and the faint squeak of the antique glider you’re sitting on going back and forth, imagine saying to yourself – as I did, “Well, that’s different.”

Here in the equivalent of Mayberry, the dogs are happy, wander the neighborhood, enjoy being petted, and steal any shoe left overnight on a front porch. Literally, the very next morning this same dog came from the opposite direction with a different shoe … only this time she came into my yard and dropped it long enough lick my hand and roll on her back to greet me. A neighbor, out for a walk at the same time, hollered from the street, “She’s the community dog … she doesn’t belong to anybody, but she’s a good watchdog … her name is Dog.”

…There’s also the gnats.

Did you know there was such a thing as the “Gnat Belt”?

Well, we are in it!

Continued Observations

Honestly, there’s a lot more I’d like to tell you, but I don’t want to wear out my welcome. If I bore you now, you might not come back. How sad would that be?

I mean, I’ve left my hometown; I’d hate to lose you guys!

So, hug the ones you love, thank the Lord for His blessings, and be on the lookout for some more posts. What I’m learning I’ll certainly share with you 🙂

God bless!

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Filed under animals, blogging, community, Food, General Observations, places, writing

An Update On Jack (and answered prayer)

On Tuesday, June 6, our little dog, Jack, was attacked in our front yard by a roaming pit bull mix (I despise that dog). On June 7, the day after, I published a post entitled “Praying for an Animal” and addressed the biblical reasons for doing so.

Here are some photos of how bad he was messed up.

Jack had approximately 15 puncture wounds, a couple of which went into the muscle – these were the most troubling.

There was so much damage that drain tubes had to be inserted all over his little body so that fluid could drain. He had multiple staples holding his wounds together.

Most concerning was his back, because it was there that the skin was literally pulled away from the muscle beneath. Between that and the punctured muscle, the vet warned us this might not end well.

However, despite how crazy it might have seemed, the evening of the 7th we prayed for Jack, even anointing his little furry head with oil. Want to know what happened next?

The first thing Thursday morning the 8th Jack was sitting up and wanting to play with his favorite toy, a chewed-up cheetah!

Now, just a week and four days later…today…in our back yard…I filmed a camera-shy little Jack. You judge for yourself whether or not God answered our prayers.

Thank you, everybody, for your kind thoughts, prayers, and well-wishes. I believe Jack is going to be fine 🙂

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Filed under animals, Prayer

Praying for an Animal

I know I’ve got guest posts being posted, but I had to share something with you, something that I did tonight.

You see, my daughter’s little dog, Jack, was attacked in our yard by another dog that has been walking unattended through the neighborhood. Jack is a small dog, only about 12 pounds, and the dog that attacked him was a larger pit-bull mix. Ugly, too.

According to the vet to which my wife and daughter took Jack today, he had around 15 puncture wounds, torn skin, and possibly some muscle damage. Jack has been in a lot of pain, very weak, and very pitiful.

It’s been difficult for us, too.

So, this afternoon, before I came home from work, I told my wife that we would be praying for Jack this evening. She agreed. She also agreed with me that there was nothing unbiblical about doing so, either.

Have you ever prayed over a wounded pet? Have you ever anointed one with oil and prayed for one while being on Facebook Live? Well, that’s what I did tonight.

What do you think about praying for this little dog? Do you think it was silly thing to do? Do you think it was sacrilegious? If so, let give you some things to think about.

First, there is nothing too big or too small, nothing too important or insignificant, to keep us from praying to our Heavenly Father. Are you a parent? Tell me, when your little children drew a picture that made no sense, did it still thrill you when they brought it to you as a gift, all proud? Did you think it was beautiful, even though others may have thought is was scribble?

God is our Abba, our Father, so don’t you think it pleases Him when we bring ANYTHING to him in prayer? Of course it does! That shows Him we care about something and we want Him to care, too! It shows Him that we have faith in Him to take care of something, something we have no control over. It shows that we believe in Him enough to take our petitions to Him, not someone else.

Do you think a hurt little dog is insignificant? Guess what, how big do you think your biggest prayer request is in the light of Omnipotent God? EVERY need we have is small to Him!

Secondly, what do you think about praying for a dog? Do you think it is crazy to ask God to heal a dog? Do you think that matters nothing to Him? Well, what about how He takes note of every sparrow that falls (Matthew 10:29; Luke 12:6)? What about the time He chastised Jonah for not even caring about the cattle that could have been killed (Jonah 4:11)? What about how one of the characteristics of a righteous man is how he cares for his animals (Proverbs 12:10)? Need I go on?

When the Lord created all living things, what did He say? He said, “It is good.” God cares for His creation, and that is why He expects us to take care of it and tend it. If God made our little dog, then He cares for our little dog.

Third, there’s this thing called faith. Are you aware that whenever we put our faith in the Lord for anything, that brings Him glory? Our trust in Him to do something we can’t shows our dependency on Him (Psalm 57:2).

Fourth, God cares about us. That’s the biggie. God, our Father in Heaven, is so much better of a father than we could ever be (Matt. 7:11; Luke 11:13). When our children hurt, that hurts us. Likewise, when we hurt, it must pain our Father. Does he not collect our tears (Psalm 56:8).

So, I prayed for our little dog. I even anointed him with oil when I prayed – as a symbol of faith (believe me, I understand the context of the passages, so you don’t have to offer any exegesis). I prayed, and I believe, that my Father, little Jack’s Creator, will heal him and raise him back up.

So, for my daughter’s sake, and for the glory of the Lord, will you say a pray for Jack, our little dog? He is in pain, has multiple wounds, some of which are down into the muscle. A large portion of his back had the skin pulled away from the muscle. He even has multiple tube protruding from his body in order to help his wounds to drain. He also has multiple staples all over his body.

Thank you for caring.

Poor little guy even has to endure a “cone of shame.”

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Filed under animals, Prayer

An Attempted Crossing

I once saw a cat chase a chicken.

It chased it across a main road.

Through traffic they raced unhalted

Until they stumbled upon a dead toad. 

Like half of a Sunday school song

It was flat and wide, not deep. 

It hadn’t been dead for long,

And both of them started to weep. 

“Oh cluck cluck cluck!” went the chicken.

“Meow so sad!” went the cat. 

Then before their fruitless chase could continue, 

A minivan flattened them flat. 
The End

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Filed under Humor, poetry, Uncategorized

Equal Access Relief Room

Here I am in the terminal of the Dulles International Airport in Washington, D.C. As of this writing I still have an hour or two before boarding a 777 in route to Ethiopia, then Zimbabwe. 

Please make sure to check out the guest posts which I’ve scheduled over the next week or so. 

Now, the reason I’m writing this post while sitting in the airport is because I saw something I’ve never seen before. 


I guess when men and women can use the bathroom of their choice, depending on how they identify at any given moment, I’m glad our animals now have a place to relieve themselves. 

But what if, after all this travel, I feel DOG TIRED? 

Just a thought. But how do you flush that hydrant? 

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Filed under America, animals, Culture Wars, Uncategorized

It’s Just an Alligator, Move Along

Remembering the Trip

Like I said all last week, my family (most of us) made the nearly 8-hour drive down to Charleston, S.C. to visit with our daughter Alicia and her husband Josh. We had a good time.

But one thing I noticed just blew me away: The casual attitude toward alligators in one’s backyard!

Seriously, my daughter lives in a fairly upscale neighborhood, not in a swamp. Yet, because it’s South Carolina, and because there’s lots of water in various places, the swamp critters have become accustomed to the upwardly mobile millennials. I guess they’re more afraid of the reality show crowd than the realtors.

So, as you can see from the picture below, it is not uncommon for the people in Alicia and Josh’s neighborhood to sit out and watch living cowboy boots and purses sun in their backyards. You can also tell by the quality of the picture that we decided to keep our distance.

IMG_0500

Too Common

When we see things too often they become mundane. In the beginning one might scream, “There’s an alligator in our yard!!” Then, after only a few mortgage payments, one ends up telling her guests, “It’s just an alligator, Mom.”

Unfortunately, the way we view sin can be the same way. At first it shocks us and we cry out in disgust, “Did you see that??” But then a little later, after a few seasons… after a few dates… or after a few drinks, cries of shock morph into indignant apathy, “It’s just the way things are! Jeez! Quit being so dramatic.”

“And even as they did not like to retain God in [their] knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;” – Romans 1:28

“Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.” – Ephesians 4:19

“…having their conscience seared with a hot iron…” 1 Timothy 4:2b

The danger of growing too accustomed to sin is that God will turn us over to it and let us be destroyed by what we have come to believe is harmless.

Be forewarned…an alligator is an alligator, and sin is still sin; both will bite in the end.

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Filed under General Observations

At Least It’s Not 107 Degrees!

Cold

It’s cold in Chattanooga. How cold is it? I put ice cubes down my shirt just to warm up.

Seriously, this morning schools are delayed two hours because it’s somewhere in the neighborhood of 15 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s just stupid cold for this part of the country.

My daddy used to say, “It’s as cold as a witch’s upper torso.” If you can figure out what that means, more power to ya’.

Heat

The funny thing is that no matter what the temperature, whether cold or hot, people are always going to wish it was the opposite. When it’s hot outside people complain. When it’s cold outside people complain. The only people I never hear complain are the ones who have the same climate year round, like the North Pole or Hawaii.

So, as you down here in the South complain about how cold it is, just remember the heat wave of 2012. That was when we would have welcomed a cold snap. I mean, 107 degrees and humid is hot no matter where you live!

“I don’t say this out of need, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know both how to have a little, and I know how to have a lot. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being content — whether well fed or hungry, whether in abundance or in need. I am able to do all things through Him who strengthens me.” – Philippians 4:11-13 HCSB

Maybe we should just take a cue from the Apostle Paul and learn to be content – no matter what temperature life may bring. 

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Filed under Christian Maturity, current events