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Are You Reluctant To Read Stay?

My new book Stay: Lessons My Dogs Taught Me about Life, Loss, and Grace has been available for about 3 months. Your response has been an encouragement and blessing. Today I wanted to address the elephant in the kennel. When I have done book signings or talked about the book on the radio I often get these responses. “Is this a sad book?” “Will it make me cry?” “Does the dog die?” Those are usually followed by something like this. “I can’t read it if it is (any of the above).” My honest answers to the above queries would be sometimes, maybe and yes. But Stay is not a book about dying. It is entirely a book about living! The sad moments are wrapped in the redemptive joy of life, relationship and grace. I am pretty sure you will laugh, relate often to the stories of friendship, and marvel at the gift God has given us with these furry friends.
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Tragedy in Waco and the Heartbreaking Consequences of Sin

It is Monday. Enough said. And it has been raining pretty consistently here in Texas for weeks. That is the combo platter The Carpenter’s made famous when they sang Rainy Days and Mondays Always Get Me Down. The first stanza really captures my mood today. Talkin’ to myself and feelin’ old Sometimes I’d like to quit, nothin’ ever seems to fit That seems about right today as I contemplate the devastating and heartbreaking toll of sin. I know. That is not politically correct. But there is no other word that describes what I am seeing today. I see a beloved and effective pastor lose his ministry for the false hope of an inappropriate relationship. Sin says that there is more. Sin says that you deserve to be happier and that will only be true in a different relationship. Sin says that God does not really have your best interest at heart. I hate those lies from Satan that we continue
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How Do You Become God’s Favorite Child?

I love my pastor and his family. That is a such a blessing to be able to say that. Jeff Denton brought his unique blend of wisdom, geekiness, humor, grace, leadership, Biblical truth and pastoral care to Wylie, Texas several years ago. Waterbrook Bible Fellowship will never be the same and that is a very good thing. Our church has four amazing and gifted pastors on staff with Jeff as the Lead Pastor. Check it out if you are churchless in Collin County. You never know what Jeff will say or post online. He is totally out there as a pastor, husband and dad. Recently he shared this exchange with one of his teenagers. “All it takes to be my favorite child is obedience.” “Well, I guess I’ll never be your favorite then.” I don’t know which one said that but I am sure it could have come from either J.J. or Amelia. I know that Jeff said that with
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4 Profound Lessons I Learned From My Dogs

Reposted from Faithstreet.com. Esteemed theologian and reformer Martin Luther wrote about his canine companions, “The dog is the most faithful of animals and would be much esteemed were it not so common. Our Lord God has made his greatest gifts the commonest.” We can learn so much from these faithful friends about life, love, and grace. Who knew that some of my most profound lessons would be taught by a couple of rescued puppies? I am not ashamed to confess I have been discipled by my dogs. Here are a few “bite-sized” treats I’ve learned from my canine companions: 1. Revel in the life you have. Is there a better example of this than a canine companion? If only we could live like we were just let off the leash to run in freedom and joyous abandon. I wish I enjoyed anything as much as my dog enjoys everything! Enjoy the day you have. Sure, life can be hard and
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Revenge concept.

The “Revengers” Are Not Superheroes!

The Avengers: Age of Ulton is the blockbuster movie that recently debuted to record numbers. It features the familiar Marvel comic book superheroes. The team struggles to stop Ulton’s plan to make humanity extinct. Sadly I have played a non-superhero for much of my journey with the Lord. I have tried (mostly unsuccessfully) to be a Revenger. When I am wronged I fight for my truth and my justice. If a relationship becomes extinct in the process that is the price of being right and for justice to prevail. Fortunately my role did not include any Spandex costumes. But the truth is I find revenge a much easier road to take than forgiveness. When I am wounded or offended my first response is usually sinful. I am hardly unique. A couple of guys who were really close to Jesus had the same sinful response to bad behavior. He sent messengers ahead to a Samaritan village to prepare for his arrival.
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One Secret of Happiness.

Regular readers of these humble ramblings (all tens of you) know what an over the top dog lover I am. I shared this illustration in my new book Stay. A sick man turned to his doctor, as he was preparing to leave the examination room and said, “Doctor, I am afraid to die. Tell me what lies on the other side.” Very quietly, the doctor said, “I don’t know.” “You don’t know? You, a Christian man, do not know what is on the other side?” The doctor was holding the handle of the door; on the other side of which came a sound of scratching and whining, and as he opened the door, a dog sprang into the room and leaped on him with an eager show of gladness. Turning to the patient, the doctor said, “Did you notice my dog? He’s never been in this room before. He didn’t know what was inside. He knew nothing except that his
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What The World Really Needs Now

In 1965 Jackie DeShannon recorded the hit song “What the World Needs Now is Love”. Three years later Dion recorded a song called “Abraham, Martin and John”.  In 1971 a Los Angeles disc jockey named Tom Clay combined those tunes with some news audio clips to create a powerful social commentary. What the World Needs Now by Tom Clay covers the two songs with versions by The Blackberries, a session recording group from LA. The record begins with a child trying to define some grown-up words like segregation and prejudice. It is a powerful reminder that although all of us are born broken and with a sin nature. The truth is that a lot of how we act on that sin nature is learned behavior from our culture and those around us. There is a better way. Here is how the song began… Interviewer: What is segregation? Child: I don’t know what seggeration is. Interviewer: Uh, what is bigotry? Child:
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