Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Another reason to dislike cats

"Jennifer and Jim kept getting huge water bills. They knew beyond a doubt that the bills weren't representative of their actual usage, and no matter how they tried to conserve, the high bills continued.
Although they could see nothing wrong, they had everything checked for leaks or problems: first the water meter, then outdoor pipes, indoor pipes, underground pipes, faucets, toilets, washer, ice maker, etc. -- all to no avail.
One day Jim was sick and stayed home in bed, but kept hearing water running downstairs. He finally tore himself from his sick bed to investigate, and stumbled onto the cause of such high water bills. Apparently this was happening all day long when they were not at home. Knowing that few would believe him, he taped a segment of the 'problem' for posterity -- see attached video."

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

One Creature Great and Small

I took Micah to the vet this morning fully knowing that she would not be coming home. She was really sick and everyone knew the time had come to let her go.

Micah was a vital part of our family for over twelve years. Companion, confidante, and champion eater, she was everything that a family could hope for in a dog. When you have six kids in ten years, you require pets that are patient, longsuffering, and gentle. Micah was such a quiet presence that sometimes she didn't get the attention that she probably deserved. But with a simple pat on the head or tummy rub, she would stare into our eyes with unending adoration. She was almost always the first to approach those with heavy spirits and offer total acceptance and a lick of encouragement. Like many dogs, she was special. God created her uniquely for us.

With that introduction, ten lingering reflections of the Underdog's underdog:

1. Micah heard just about as many of my quiet time prayers as God did. She was always underfoot during my Bible study. I don't know if she was praying with me or just eavesdropping.

2. Micah confirmed my belief in God's sovereignty over little things. She was the perfect dog for a family of our size and complexity.

3. Unconditional love, never skipping a day in twelve years.

4. I take showers. So when I would turn on a bathtub faucet anywhere in the house, Micah would disappear. She hated baths.

5. She was funny looking, but never cared.

6. Micah last contribution to our family was an opportunity to teach my kids tonight that the wages of sin is death. Death is a terrible thing. But grace is greater than all our sin. And death has lost its sting.

7. My youngest two kids will never know Micah, but their older siblings will be able to tell stories about her.

8. Micah never got angry. Never. No one could recall a time when she as much as snapped at anyone. Micah set a good example for me.

9. That dog was a dumb as a rock. But her emotional intelligence was off the charts. She could just sense the person in the family that needed a little puppy love at any given moment.

10. Micah was a gift. As we remembered and told stories about Micah this evening, we ended by praising her Creator. Our family would have been very different if she had not been a member. In the twelve years Mrs. Underdog and I have been married, we have moved four times, introduced six children, and worked for six different employers. Micah was a consistent source of affection and loyalty through it all.

Micah never learned to read. But I am going to type this anyway, fully knowing she will never see it:

Thanks, Micah.

Well done.

Rest in peace.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Times are tough in Michigan

On the other hand, this could happen to just about any of us...

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Independence crucified

Taken from Tim Keller's recent Gospel Coalition message:

When we are raising children, if we push them away and keep them at arm’s length in order to preserve our freedom and independence, they will grow up emotionally dependent and damaged. The only way our children can grow up with freedom and independence is if we sacrifice our freedom and independence, for years on end. Once again, it’s them or you.

Painfully true, I think.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


“Anyone can revolt. It is more difficult silently to obey our own inner promptings, and to spend our lives finding sincere and fitting means of expression for our temperament and our gifts.”

---Georges Rouault, a French Expressionist painter from the nineteenth century

What we love

I am reading a book that is a summary of Jonathan Edwards' Religious Affections. For those of you that are unfamiliar with Religious Affections, it is often mentioned as one of the most influencial books in church history. Many of the men that I respect most cite this book as one that changed their lives. It has been a disturbing read to say the least. From time to time I run into a book that does not allow be to remain unchanged and RA is forming up to be one of those books.

Edwards writes that our affections (the actions that result from the orientation of our souls or the fervent exercises of the heart) define whether we know God or not. In other words, we are spiritually defined by what we love consistently. He would also say that what we love will also influence what we hate (love God = hate sin).

This little idea has rocked my world. There are times when I desparately love God, but often I only hide the household gods instead of destroying them. My affections are divided and I break the most important commandment over and over again. I love the Lord my God with some of my heart and some of my soul and some of my strength. I need God to save me from myself.

And He Jesus. In Christ, my affections can be changed. Will be changed. And as I am sanctified by Him, a clearer view of Him will make everything else seem worthless in comparison.

So. What do you love?

In response to TobyBo's comment yesterday

Here is the cat "post cleaning".....

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Maybe I can borrow a cat...

Instructions for cleaning the toilet:
1. Lift the lid on the toilet and fill it with 1/8 cup of animal shampoo.
2. Take the cat in your arms and stroke it gently while slowly moving in the direction of the toilet.
3. At a suitable moment, throw the cat into the toilet bowl and close the lid quickly and either stand or sit on the lid.
4. The cat will now start the cleaning process and will produce generate plenty of foam.
Do not be concerned about the loud noises coming from the toilet; your cat is enjoying himself.
5. After several minutes flush the toilet to start the “Power-wash” pre-wash and then flush again for the main wash cycle.
6. Ask someone to open the front door and ensure that no-one is between the toilet and the front door.
7. Get off the toilet seat and from a safe distance open the toilet lid quickly.
The cat will dry off naturally due to the high speed he will be moving from the toilet to the front door.
8. The toilet and the cat are now both clean

With best wishes,

The Dog

Back in the game

I haven't written anything on this blog for quite some time. There have been times when I thought about posting something, but other things arose that took priority. As the six Pups grow, I am finding that the demands of discipleship are also multiplying. Life has become steadily more exciting with opportunities left and right to start businesses, lead my family, and help restore lost Sheep.

With all that said, there is always a tug back towards writing stuff. In part, because it is an outlet for me. Life is far too interesting not to share it with others, even if those others are often nameless and faceless. I tried Facebook and although it is very cool for posting thoughts, it is more about punchlines. Everyone puts their punchlines out there for public consumption. I don't get Twitter. It seems to me to be pretty self-important to think that everyone cares when you are brushing your teeth or watching a movie or grooming your gerbil. Guess I am only immature enough for Facebook.

For my two readers (thanks for checking in every few days Aaron), I will begin posting regularly again. I can't guarantee quality, but it will always be interesting....

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Too good to pass up

I haven't posted in a while, but this was too good not to share.....

The phone call Rich Evans got Monday morning wasn’t good news.

It was an employee at Brigham Young University’s The Daily Universe , where Evans is the editorial manager. There was a typo on the front page.

“It was the worst possible mistake,” Evans recalled.

The error? A caption on a photo from this weekend’s LDS General Conference stated that “Members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostates and other general authorities raise their hands in a sustaining vote Saturday morning. …”

The newspaper staff retrieved as many of the 18,500 copies of the paper as possible and reprinted them with the correction. And it issued an apology to the apostles. The staff also explained how it happened: an error in spell-checking.

It started when a student misspelled the word “apostle” when writing the photo caption. When the caption was put through the editing software’s spell checker, it was flagged, and the editor accidentally clicked the first word that came up on the correct list: “apostate.” The mistake made it past two proofreaders before being sent off to the printing press.