where love is alive 

Two times over the past year and a half I have written my article on a continuing story about our young German Shephard named Bella and how she is teaching me about life and my relationship with God.  I believe it to be time to update my story to date, and I am fairly certain a few of you have been waiting to hear how the journey is going.  Bella is now about a year and half old and has grown into a full sized German Shephard.  I am sure she will fill out quite a bit moving forward but for now she is tall and very long.  When she stands on her back legs she can put her front legs on my shoulders, so she is a giant.  She has a bark that would scare anyone away and she enjoys using it when she hears things out of the ordinary.  About the one year mark we noticed a significant change in her:  she began to calm down and do less of the jumping I had mentioned before.  Since then we have seen her develop into one of the finest pets we have ever had.  She is loyal to a fault and will defend her family and her turf no matter what.  She is obedient to not just Dawn or I, but also our kids.  Given some time, she has matured and become exactly what we wanted her to be:  a loyal pet that would protect her family.  In a very simple spiritual comparison, this is a great picture of a child’s life that has been in church and is being raised by godly parents.  There will be trials and frustrations on both the child’s part and the parents’ part, but in a general statement that is true much of the time, he turns into a young adult that is faithful to the Lord and loves his family dearly.  As parents, we have a scripture passage that we can hold on to that points us this direction.  Proverbs 22:6 says, “Train up a child in the way that he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”  As all the proverbs are, this is a general statement that is going to be true much of the time, but isn’t a guarantee.  The implication is that IF we do the things we need to do as godly parents, then there is a strong possibility that our children will turn into adults that are faithful to the Lord and also love their families.  Now clearly I could spend some time on this, but I’m not going to.  Instead, I would like to invite you all to worship on November 4th, when I will have the opportunity to preach and share some strategies that will raise the likelihood of our children “not departing” from our teaching.  So for now, keep training your children to be like Christ and trust Proverbs 22.  They may not turn into a loyal German Shephard, but chances are they will turn into something MUCH better!

As far as the Cox household goes, we have added a second puppy to our pack.  His name is Sweet Buddy that is now a six month old Goldendoodle, and all I can say is “OH BOY”!  But that, too, is a story for another day!

God bless my church family!

Jason

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