|Mom and Dad and a two-year-old BT
Up until I was six years old, we lived in a big white house with a picket fence and a concrete sidewalk where
I could ride my tricycle all the way to the corner, where the walk widened so I could make a big circle turn-around and head
The Dad was called to preach, and after running away to Pleasant Hope, Missouri, then to Branson, where he
finally said “Yes” to the Lord and we turned poor. Really poor, because the depression was on, and Preachers lived
on what people were able or willing to give. A jar of peaches. An offering that didn’t pay his gasoline bill to the
church. Once after a revival, and we were to leave the next morning, a lady asked him not to leave until she saw him. We waited
til mid-morning and she came…and gave him a dime. So you know what I mean about “good times” and “bad
That came to mind as I was reading “Red and Rover” on the comics page of the Kansas City Star
this morning. “Red” is a kid, and “Rover” is his faithful dog. And since it IS, after all, the comics,
we can read the dog’s thoughts. Red asks, “Rover, if you could live anywhere in the word…ANYWHERE…where
would you want to live? And Rover says, “Wherever YOU live.”
I’m telling you this so I can tell you about my dog, Mickey, who was my companion from age eight until
I went away to Naval service. He saw the good times with me, and he saw the poor times with me. And he loved me as no one
else could, through it all. He was the epitome of that country song, “Stand by your man.” We were inseparable.
Again, he was Ruth, telling Naomi, “Whither Thou Goest, I will go; whither thou lodgest, I will lodge.” (The Bible;
Ruth 1:16). When I walked, he followed; when I ran, he chased…maybe why I did so well in track in high school and college.
And what’s this all about? Just to tell you that this is the kind of love God wants US to have. Through
good times and bad, whether we’re talking about a stranger, a friend, or a spouse. I’ve often said that the true
friend is one you can tell anything to, without fear that it will be repeated out of context, or even mentioned at all if
it’s about a weakness you’ve admitted. Then my Sunday School teacher went a step farther…she said, “Don’t
repeat anything about someone that you wouldn’t want said about yourself.”
Folks, those are words to live by. Tell the good with joy; and if you must listen to the bad, keep it to yourself.
Let the love of a dog be a guide. We Christians have a phrase: “What Would Jesus Do.” And the first thing He would
do, would be to forgive you of your sins and set you on your way to Heaven. Just ask. And now would be a good time to talk
to Him about it.
37BT Bill Thornton April 29, 2004