A sweet family recently received a puppy from us. They were very excited, but when the time came to bring him home, they called immediately with concerns.
After having him home for only an hour or so, the phone rang and the questions started coming.
He bites. Will he always bite?
What do we do about his biting?
He bites his doggy bed and tries to tear it up. What do we do?
How much food and when do you feed him?
When does he go to the bathroom? What schedule is he on?
How much water? Should he drink every 2 hours?
He has so much energy. Will he be like this all the time?
When they first saw the pictures, he was adorable to them. A sweet, innocent puppy. They dreamed of the cuddles, the soft fur, the puppy breath and the licks on the face.
They dreamed of taking long, enjoyable walks with him on a day filled with sunshine.
They thought of days laying around the house with a sweet puppy on their lap.
This was their wake up call.
Sure, he is all of those things, but he’s a puppy, so he is more. You can’t pick and choose what you want out of a puppy – it’s all or nothing.
They were honest and said they never had a puppy before. Her son was there to help the mom and her husband, but she had so many questions. She couldn’t wrap her mind around these “extra” things she didn’t realize came with a puppy.
I explained puppies are like babies. They will be energetic in spurts and then they will sleep.
I explained he needs toys to chew on (he’s a lab) and he needs to be taught what he can and can’t chew or put his mouth on. We talked about food, treats, potty training, vaccinations, and more. All of these things were already covered in the packet of information, but we realized not everyone reads the helpful tips included.
She was finally seeing this puppy for all he was, a full labrador retriever and 100% puppy. She had to count the cost and decide what to do.
Would she accept him for who he was or turn away from the truth she had discovered?
Today in the book of Exodus we can see obedience to God’s Word is vital and, with God, it’s all or nothing.
“At a lodging place on the way, the Lord met Moses and was about to kill him. But Zipporah took a flint knife, cut off her son’s foreskin and touched Moses’ feet with it. ‘Surely you are a bridegroom of blood to me,’ she said. So the Lord let him alone. (At that time she said ‘bridegroom of blood,’ referring to circumcision.)” (Exodus 4:24-26)
Moses is on his way to Egypt, obeying what God told him to do. And then the Lord, probably with a sword drawn, shows up ready to kill Moses.
Woah! What did Moses do?
What sin did he commit?
Why would the Lord, who was talking with him one-on-one before, now want to kill him?
The first thing we see here is that Moses has married outside of his people, the Israelites. Zipporah was a Midianite. God knew these other people groups worshiped false gods, idols, and did not have the commitment to the one true God.
Zipporah did not know, or if she did, she did not like the command for all Israelites to circumcise their sons.
The second sin we see is the sin of omission. It wasn’t what Moses did that was wrong, it was what he didn’t do.
He failed to honor the covenant between God and Israel by not circumcising his son. If you’ll recall, circumcision was the way the Israelites would be known as God’s children. They would be set apart from all of the others because of this procedure. In anger, Zipporah does it herself, and circumcises their son.
Moses realized he could not obey God in only a slice of his life and not in whole.
Sometimes, we want to give the Lord part of us, but not everything. Our attitudes aren’t lined up with God’s commands.
Many will say: “Sure, I go to church (or attend online) on Sunday, but not that evening. That’s my time. And I make my money, I’ll pay everything I need to and, Oh, here you go Lord, there’s a $20 bill because that’s all I have left after I pay my bills and stuff. And of course Lord, I want your blessings and answers to my prayers, I’ll even serve in your church if I’m asked to, but this other part of my life, that’s nobody’s business. What I do on my time isn’t hurting anyone else, so I’ll keep doing that.”
We can’t give God part of our life.
He gave us all of His, why should we expect to give any less? It’s all or nothing.
He has given us the written Word to instruct us and guide us. If we don’t do what it says where He has commanded, we are guilty. And if we do the things it says not to do, we are guilty. We can’t pick and choose.
It’s all or nothing.
Just like the woman who had to count the cost and decide about her puppy – will we accept God for who He is or turn away from the truth we have discovered?
The Lord stands before us with a sword drawn.
Will you obey?