Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Max’ism – Setting Boundaries
Exodus 20:1-20

I have a full time job, which means for a large part of the day Max is alone. . .with the cat. While not ideal, the situation worked for a while, but gradually I started coming to home to more and more messes—a trash can turned over, things scattered around the floor, not to mention the little gifts Max sometimes left behind. You know what I mean. All of that was inconvenient, but it wasn’t a major problem until I found him tangled up with an appliance. Yep. Somehow, he’d managed to worm his way into the storage closet, tip the vacuum over, and entangle himself in the power cord. I shudder to think how long he was in there. I’m assuming it was a confrontation with the kitty that led to his predicament. Either way, I knew I had to do something.

So, it was off to Wal-Mart to buy baby gates.

Knowing what an athlete Max is, I thought it wise to buy gates too tall for him to jump over. He was curious at first, sniffing the new contraptions with interest. But then he discovered what they were for. The first time I left for work with the gates up and Max secured behind them, confined to the kitchen, hallway, and bathroom, he pouted, and whined, and cried, sadly watching me leave from the window next to the door.

I ran home at lunch to check on him. While he still wasn’t happy, he wasn’t tangled up in a cord, either. I turned the radio, having heard that any noise in the house helps keep a pet from feeling lonely. It took nearly a month, but Max has accepted that there are days he’ll be confined by the gates, and he no longer whines when I leave, content to play with the crate full of toys I’ve bought him, and listen to Bob Barker announcing the winner on the Big Wheel.

Which got me thinking.

Boundaries are a good thing. They keep us from harm. They limit the trouble we get into. So why do we buck against the boundaries God has set for us, knowing that He placed them with our best interests at heart? If we’re certain that our God loves us, shouldn’t we be glad that He cares enough to see to our welfare?

I know I am. And I think Max is, too.

Friday, October 23, 2009

OLD IS WHEN ...Your sweetie says, "Let's go upstairs and make love," and you answer, "Honey, I can't do both!"

OLD IS WHEN...Your friends compliment you on your new alligator shoes and you're barefoot.

OLD IS WHEN...A sexy babe catches your fancy and your pacemaker opens the garage door.

OLD IS WHEN...Going bra-less pulls all the wrinkles out of your face.

OLD IS WHEN...You don't care where your spouse goes, just as long as you don't have to go along.

OLD IS WHEN...You are cautioned to slow down by the doctor instead of the police.

OLD IS WHEN..."Getting a little action" means I don't need to take any fiber today.

OLD IS WHEN..."Getting lucky" means you find your car in the parking lot.

OLD IS WHEN...An "all nighter" means not getting up to pee!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Max’ism – Now That’s Talent
Matthew 25:14-30

I’ve always thought Max was a smart dog, but he really impressed me one day when my husband pulled out the treadmill do his running.

Determined to get in shape for a ski trip we are planning over spring break, my husband has been running faithfully for about three weeks. Each time he turns on the treadmill, Max sits next to him, watching the belt speed by. Worried that he might try and grab the belt with his mouth, or get his paw stuck, I usually encourage Max to move away. But today, I wasn’t paying a whole lot of attention to him…until my husband called my name.

“Come see what your dog is doing,” he huffed.

So I went into the living room to watch. Max took his squeaky, carefully set it on the front of the treadmill, and waited patiently until the vibration of my husband’s pounding feet knocked it onto the belt. The squeaky then shot off the back, sailing into the air a good foot before hitting the ground. The moment the squeaky fell onto the belt, Max dashed around to the back of the treadmill and tried to catch the squeaky before it fell to the floor. Over and over he pulled the same trick, each time coming just a little closer to catching the toy. My husband got to laughing so hard he had to stop running.

“Now that’s talent,” he said.

“No kidding. I need to write a Max’ism about it.”

Basically, I thought it was such a neat trick I wanted to tell people about it. I didn’t want to hide Max’s little “talent.”

Which got me to thinking. God has given each of us a talent—something He wants us to use for His glory or the furtherance of His kingdom. What are we doing with the gifts He’s given us? Are we showing off our talent—using it for Him? Or are we hiding our talent, content to keep it buried where it’s of no use to us or the One who bestowed it?

If I’m serious about serving the Lord, I going to have to use everything He’s given me, even if it means digging up “an old talent.”

Friday, October 16, 2009


Smart people wear thick glasses, button-down shirts, and slacks. Dumb people wear football uniforms.

Your dog is way smarter than you.

France is populated entirely by attractive young women and Gerard Depardieu.

Every Southern town has a fat redneck sheriff named "Smokey."

Mexico is populated entirely by vacationing frat boys.

Parents always come back from vacation a day early.

There are no ugly prostitutes.

It's only possible to win any sporting event in the last three seconds of the game.

The best way to escape your enemies is to drive on the wrong side of the road.

A student who's failing every class can still rig up an elaborate device to answer his phone when he calls in sick.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Max’ism – My Four
James 2:1-11

Max is not a people person kind of dog. There four people in his life that he loves—me, my husband, my son, and my daughter. Oh, he tolerates a few others—my son’s girlfriend, a couple of my daughter’s friends, and the cat. But on the whole, Max pretty much believes in the old saying, “my four and no more.”
That was made evident the day we invited the varsity football team over to our house. As part of pre-game day tradition, parents of varsity football players have started making dinner for the team on Thursday nights. Around 5:30, the first boy arrived. Max barked when the car pulled into the driveway just as he always does, but when the boy came into the house, Max promptly grabbed his pant leg and started tugging. I couldn’t get him to stop. Fearful that his actions might turn even more aggressive, I shut Max up in our bedroom for the duration of the meal. It would have worked, if my daughter hadn’t gone into the bedroom for something. Out shot Max, barking, growling, the hair on his back standing straight on end. I must admit, I laughed when I saw all twenty of those macho football players pull their feet up onto the couch. Fortunately, once Max warmed up to everyone, he was pretty much content to ignore the intruders and everyone went home without a scratch.

Later that night, Max lay curled up on the loveseat next to me, his cold little nose tucked into the crook of my arm.

“It’s funny how he can be so loving to us, and so aggressive toward everyone else,” my husband said.

“Yep. I’d say he’s partial to us,” I replied, laughing.

But that got me to thinking.

Are there certain people I show partiality to? Do I show favor to some and not others? Has my church become a place where I’m content to say, “my four and no more?” Too many times, I’m afraid the answer to these questions would be yes. Even more frightening is the idea that my favor may be influenced by a person’s wealth or position in the community. I guess that’s why God saw fit to warn against showing partiality, and why I’m inclined to listen.

Friday, October 09, 2009

WHAT'S YOUR BUSINESS SIGN? Instead of Astrological Signs, how about these ..

You are ambitious yet stupid. You chose a marketing degree to avoid having to study in college, concentrating instead on drinking and socializing which is pretty much what your job responsibilities are now. Least compatible with Sales.

Laziest of all signs, often referred to as "marketing without a degree." You are also self-centered and paranoid. Unless someone calls you and begs you to take their money, you like to avoid contact with customers so you can "concentrate on the big picture." You seek admiration for your golf game throughout your life.

Unable to control anything in your personal life, you are instead content to completely control everything that happens at your workplace. Often even YOU don't understand what you are saying but who the hell can tell. It is written that Geeks shall inherit the Earth.

One of only two signs that you actually studied in school. It is said that engineers place ninety percent of all Personal Ads. You can be happy with yourself; your office is full of all the latest "ergodynamic" gadgets. However, we all know what is really causing your "carpal tunnel syndrome."

The only other sign that you studied in school. You are mostly immune from office politics. You are the most feared person in the organization; combined with your extreme organizational traits, the majority of rumors concerning you say that you are completely insane.

Ironically, given your access to confidential information, you tend to be the biggest gossip within the organization. Possibly the only other person that does less work than marketing, you are unable to return any calls today because you have to get a haircut, have lunch AND then mail a letter.

Catty, cutthroat, yet completely spineless, you are destined to remain at your current job for the rest of your life. Unable to make a single decision you tend to measure your worth by the number of meetings you can schedule for yourself. Best suited to marry other "Middle Managers" as everyone in your social circle is a "Middle Manager."

(See above - Same sign, different title)

Bright, cheery, positive, you are a fifty-cent cab ride from taking your own life. As children very few of you asked your parents for a little cubicle for your room and a headset so you could pretend to play "Customer Service." Continually passed over for promotions, your best bet is to sleep with your manager.

Lacking any specific knowledge, you use acronyms to avoid revealing your utter lack of experience. You have convinced yourself that your "skills" are in demand and that you could get a higher paying job with any other organization in a heartbeat. You will spend an eternity contemplating these career opportunities without ever taking direct action.

As a "person" that profits from the success of others, most people who actually work for a living disdain you. Paid on commission and susceptible to alcoholism, your ulcers and frequent heart attacks correspond directly with fluctuations in the stock market.

You are brilliant or lucky. Your inability to figure out complex systems such as the fax machine suggest the latter.

Paid to take days off. Government workers are genius inventors, like the invention of new Holidays. They usually suffer from deep depression or anxiety and usually commit serious crimes while on the job ... Thus the term "GO POSTAL"

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Max’ism: God Cares for You
Matthew 6:25-34

Dachshunds are bred hunters, but Max has never had to “hunt” for food a day in his life. Every morning, he heads to his food bowl where he knows he’ll find plenty of sustenance to carry him through the day. I doubt he worries whether or not the food will be there every morning. He assumes that it will, and believe me, he let’s me know if there wasn’t enough. He comes to my side, stares up at my face, and waits patiently until I get the idea: “Feed me. I’m hungry.” And of course, I do, because he’s depending on me.

God is so much more careful than I am. Not once has He forgotten to provide for one of His servants, so why do I worry about whether or not He’ll give me everything I need to take care of my family? Is it that I have not fully learned to trust Him? Is it that I do not believe He could love me enough to take care of me from day to day?

Unfortunately, I think it’s a combination of both, and no matter how many times I tell myself that God loves me, sin and all, I’m still afraid that one day, God will decide I’m not worthy of His love and watch care.

And therein lies my problem.

You see it’s not my worthiness that determines whether or not God will provide for me…it’s God’s character, His nature, His faithfulness. And I’m so glad.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Name Your Child According To Your Profession

Lawyer's daughter: Sue
Thief's son: Rob
Lawyer's son: Will
Doctor 's son: Bill
Meteorologist's daughter: Haley
Steam shovel operator's son: Doug
Hair Stylist's son: Bob
Homeopathic doctor's son: Herb
Justice of the peace's daughter: Mary
Sound stage technician's son: Mike
Hot-dog vendor's son: Frank
Gambler's daughter: Bette
Exercise guru's son: Jim
Cattle Thief's son: Russell
Painter's son: Art
Iron worker's son: Rusty
TV show star's daughter: Emmy
Movie star's son: Oscar
Barber's son: Harry

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