Dropping in on a friend unexpectedly is not always a good idea, but some of us live a bit spontaneously and that's just the way it seems to be. I decided to drop in on my friend, Lynn, one day, when she was living in a small apartment above a shop. The location was out of town and isolated enough that the owner, Mike, had bought a watchdog. When I arrived, the dog, called "Puppy," got to his feet and barked. I told him, "Go lie down," and headed for the side door of the building. You see I knew Puppy. He was anything but the cute cuddly little thing his name implied. He was massive and ugly, but he had always been friendly when I had visited on other occasions.
On this occasion, however, I did not know the owner had left the dog on guard. I was a bit surprised when Puppy suddenly appeared at my side just as I reached the door. He didn't growl, just peered at me with doleful yellow eyes. I patted his head and put my hand on the doorknob. Puppy wrapped his vice-like jaws around my wrist, applying just enough pressure to leave significant red marks where his teeth were. His yellow eyes were riveted on the doorknob. I let go of it. Puppy let go of my arm. For a brief second we stared at one another. I backed away and puppy trotted off, his job done. I made a mental note to always call before visiting Lynn in the future.
When I told the owner what his watchdog had done that day, Mike grinned widely and said he was going to buy Puppy a steak. "That's what he's trained to do," Mike said. "I don't want anyone hurt, I just want them warned." I thanked him for his consideration!
Warnings are good things. They keep us from harm. God's warnings, scattered throughout the Bible, also serve that purpose. In 1Corinthians 10:11 it says "These things....were written down as a warning for us..." We are warned to "watch out," "be alert," "guard your hearts." We are warned away from certain thoughts and actions and guided toward others.
To be effective, a warning must be heeded. Puppy's warning would have done me no good had I turned that doorknob. God's warnings are the same. Hebrews 12:25 says - "So don't turn a deaf ear to these gracious words. If those who ignored earthly warnings didn't get away with it, what will happen to us if we turn our backs on heavenly warnings? His voice that time shook the earth to its foundations; this time - he's told us this quite plainly - he?ll also rock the heavens...(The Message, E. Petersen)
Have you been warned? How are you responding?
Marcia Laycock is a pastor's wife and freelance writer living in Alberta Canada. Her devotional book, The Spur of the Moment has been endorsed by Janette Oke, Phil Callaway and others. To order, and to view more of Marcia's writing, see her web site - www.vinemarc.com
Copyright Marcia Lee Laycock, 2000, 2001,2002,2003,2004,2005