From Joke Devotions 3, by Chris Brekke, 2019, Sola Publishing, Graham, N.C.
Chris is a good friend of mine and has recently published this book of devotions based on jokes (and the Bible). The jokes are funny, and the Biblical applications are interesting and well done. This is his third book of joke devotions, and he has written a few other books. You can see all his books (and order them) at: www.solapublishing.com
The Emailmeditations for today and tomorrow are made up of six of those one page devotions.
A dog walks into the room, looks up at you and is thinking, “You feed me, you pet me, you put a roof over my head; you must be God.” A cat walks into the room, looks up at you and is thinking, “You feed me, you pet me, you put a roof over my head; I must be God.”
Are you smiling and nodding? This joke reveals a clear difference between dogs and cats. (At least between many of them; excluding your Fluffy, of course.) Dogs generally want to please, and even want to help you. Cats are way independent, and often aloof. Someone summed it up this way, “Dogs have masters; cats have staff.” (Now, you cat-lovers, don’t hate on me too bad. I do realize that some felines are kind and cuddly.)
So, what does this joke say about us humans? It points to a clear difference in us as well. Plenty of people apply the paradigm of the cat, “I must be God.” They think that life and all its niceties are owed them. They think they are important and deserving of all their goodies. A certain commercial years ago trumpeted, “I’m worth it.” Many commercials today still use that approach, that you deserve an expensive car or a trip to Jamaica or new furniture. The attitude is not gratitude.
The canine view, that you are the lucky recipient of a daily pile of blessings coming from someone else who loves you and provides for you: that is the perspective of faith. A Christian humbly receives each day and each breath as a gift. We look up and gladly proclaim, “You must be God. You are good and generous, and I’m happy to be your child.” If we had a tail, we’d wag it.
“Bless the Lord, 0 my soul, and forget not all his benefits” (Psalm 103:2). Try that outlook on today, would you? (#26)
A biker gang rumbles into a bar looking for trouble. They shove Wade, who’s sitting there, and spill his drink on him. They grab his arm and yank him out of his chair. Wade walks out quietly. They strut around and proclaim, “That guy sure wasn’t much of a man.” The waitress says, “He sure wasn’t much of a driver either; he just backed his semi over a bunch of motorcycles.”
Aren’t you thinking, “Atta boy! Way to get those nasty jerks! Their mean malice got what was coming to ’em.” There is planted deep within us a sense of justice. We don’t want evil to win. We want bullies to get a smack down. We want the innocent to be ok, and also to flatten some motorcycles. Even a pastor like myself loves a movie like “Die Hard,” where the bad guys get nailed in the end.
The Bible, especially in the Older Testament, carries this human realization that sin must not win. The people of God pleaded, “Arise, O Lord! Let not man prevail; let the nations be judged before thee!”(Psalm 9:19) It’s just plain wrong for evil to prevail.
On the human level we strive for justice and equality in our schools, courts and government. We gladly have police and military hold the forces of wickedness in check. In a fallen world, we need enforcers. We have to restrain evil. God bless the men and women in uniform.
Jesus adds to that earthly necessity, two truths of godly inspiration. 1) Grace and mercy need to be added into the equation whenever we can. We try to do as Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount, “Turn the other cheek,” “forgive our enemies,” and “be good to those who don’t deserve it.” Aim high and don’t be vengeful. 2) Also, we trust that God will square the books and set all things right in the end. He is the final judge, and he’ll be righteous. (#27)
Ole and Sven were trying their hand at trucking. One day they are driving their big rig down a country highway when they come to an overpass that has a sign: Clearance 10′ 3″. They pullover and measure their truck. It is 10’ 9″. Ole looks up and down the highway carefully, then says to Sven: ‘Hey, dere’s no cops around. Let’s yust go for it!”
So no cops around. Who would notice Ole’s fudging a bit on just 6 inches? That’s a minute indiscretion, isn’t it? And who declared anything holy about 10’3″ anyway? No big deal, right? (Can’t you just hear Ole’s brain ticking off his reasoning for why he doesn’t have to obey some silly rule about height?)
Ole in this story is “exhibit A” on our blind idiocy when it comes to obedience. He thought the rule was arbitrary and unnecessary. Many people today operate as if the rules don’t apply to them. We can and do alter out human rules and laws on all manner of things. That’s what politics is about. There are also some God-given rules of the road that are fixed. We are not free to decide who God is and how life shall be judged and how life works. Are we?
The secular mind might be figuring it’s all up for grabs; that we humans are the final arbiter. Like Ole, they may think, “I’ll decide what’s right and wrong” and “we can do whatever seems best to us.” Christians know that there are natural laws of creation built into the world, plus revealed laws of life given in Scripture.
The Ten Commandments are not arbitrary. You may think you can break them, but if you do, they’ll break you. Like the height of Ole’s bridge, they’re set. You can’t waive the laws of physics, nor the laws of God.
“Do not be deceived; God is not mocked, for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.” (Galatians 6:7) (#33)