FATHER'S PERSISTENT LOVE MINISTRIES, INC.
My Dear Family in Christ,
Ever precious greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!
Last month I introduced you to Clipper, my Dad’s beagle, and we talked about how God “trains” us in righteousness. Well, I am my father’s son and they say that the apple does not fall far from the tree. I could not wait to grow up and buy my own house so that I could have my own beagle in my own backyard. Thus, this month I will introduce you to Bunky, my own rabbit hound.
You would think that a man should have a better motivation to buy a house than to have his own rabbit hound, right? Well, perhaps it was not my primary motivation but it was certainly a hidden goal of my life. Hunting was in my blood. I saved money all year just to spend six weeks every fall camping in a tent with my Dad and my buddy, elk hunting at 10,000 feet. We went to Montana, Colorado, Idaho and other times Alberta in the Canadian Rockies, but always, as far away from people as we could get. I have even chopped through the ice in a lake with an ax just to get a bath! How’s that for devotion?
Anyway, needless to say I was nuts about the outdoors. When I bought my house in the early eighties, I was about 24 years old. I picked up a Century home with three acres and a six-bay garage. It had plenty of room for my hunting stuff and, for those of you who don’t know, hunters do have lots of “stuff.” There was also room for my plethora of tools because the Lord knows a man needs many, many tools so as to maintain and fix all of his “stuff.” Have I told you I like tools? I digress.
Now back to my point. My backyard was huge and ideal for a dog pen. You guessed it, I quickly built a nice big pen for my newly purchased beagle puppy named Bunky. I trained him in the same manner that I had learned from my father years before when I was only a young boy. It had worked perfectly then for my Dad and his hound, and I figured it would work just as well now for me and mine. It has been said, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” and I concur. The only difference now was that I still had to ride the bike myself because I had no son to do it! Ha!
Bunky grew up, matured and became a great rabbit hound. I loved that dog with all my heart and I took him everywhere I went. Eventually, I felt sorry for him on cold winter nights even though I had built him a nice dog house. So I went out and got him a buddy to stay warm with and named him “Buster.” Bunky and Buster were my pride and joy and the three of us were inseparable. I would have never told Buster but Bunky was my firstborn, and therefore, my favorite.
I always drove a pick-up truck and my dogs were always in the back bed. It was wide open, but they would never jump out, no matter what, unless of course, a rabbit ran by. I drove them around for years in the bed of my truck and never had a problem. Still, I had this underlying feeling that they were not safe, so eventually, I tied ropes to the inside of the back of the bed to tie the dogs to. They were long ropes so they could jump out and walk around if I stopped and went into a store or something. I just wanted to protect them.
I just wasn’t using my noodle, and one day I was out with just Bunky and he was tied to the rope in the bed. I was in a good rabbit area so I was cruising slowly, about 25 miles per hour, looking for places to hunt. It was a beautiful fall day and as I glanced out my rearview mirror, my stars, there was Bunky on the end of the rope bouncing along on the road by his neck behind my truck! I guess he saw a rabbit. I slammed on the brakes and ran out. He was a bloody mess. I took him in my arms and started to cry. I wrapped him in a blanket and put him on my lap, and by the grace of God, I found a vet who took him. Amazingly, Bunky made it! Yep, he lived to hunt again. After that, though, he always walked with a limp, and that limp always reminded me of my failure to protect him. What I learned was that the very thing I thought was protecting and helping Bunky was the very thing that in the end hurt him!
It is written, “Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my Spirit unto you, I will make known My words unto you.” (Prov. 1:23)
As it was with Bunky and me, so it is sometimes in our walk. There are old habits that we think we need to hold on to because we wrongly perceive them as beneficial. They can be entrenched in us and we embrace them because they may “temporarily” bring us comfort. We think they help us, but really, they will be our demise. Perhaps Satan has you tied to a rope that you think is protecting you? Today’s Christians are tied to the TV as a “must have” in their walk, knowing it is a spiritual cesspool. Beloved, you better hope a rabbit doesn’t run by while you are tied to that rope! When the Lord looks in the rearview mirror, will He see you as I did Bunky? Beloved, you don’t have to. . .
“WALK WITH A LIMP."
JOYFULLY IN JESUS,