Tag Archives: Animals

Whimper of doom, or bullhorn of hope?

Yesterday I caved into a friend and watched one of those terrifying videos about America being “Babylon the Great mother of harlots” soon to be thrown into chaos by an EMP attack. (Better act now if you want to survive). I normally avoid those sorts of things on the premise that they disempower our hearts and produce a panic over the “inevitible” rather than a hope for the future. Some end-time presentations carry the silent message, “There’s little you can do apart from tightening your seatbelt and preparing for impact.”

Of course that’s contrary to everything Jesus is, and everything he taught. We have a clear part to play, and we don’t fulfill our destiny by “surviving” in fallout shelters and holes in the ground. Any preacher, author, or YouTube video that leaves us running for the hills or stockpiling food and ammunition carries a distorted message of the Kingdom at best. God’s word encourages us to prepare for troubled times, but there’s never a hint of fatalism and helplessness. While religion is waving the flag of doom, God’s children are manning the bullhorn of hope: “These are exciting times!” “Darkness as black as night covers the nations of the earth, but the glory of the LORD arises upon you.” (Isaiah 60:2)

Animals, on the other hand, seem to becoming “kingdomized.” Videos by the boatload are surfacing of species playing together: Orangutangs with cheetahs, lions with bears, and dogs with leopards. My friend, Beth, calls them “millenial animals.” These furry friends are aligning themselves with the Kingdom of God and offering a glimpse of the future .  We ought to be doing the same.

(photo from today.com)
(photo from today.com)

“The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them.” (Isaiah 11:6).

As much as we Believers need to recognize the darkness, ours is the honor of pointing the way forward. “Nations will come to your light, And kings to the brightness of your rising.” (Isaiah 60:3) Regardless of what may come, it’s time to turn from our fatalism and boldly proclaim the Hope of God’s Kingdom.

Saint Francis and Cesar Millan

I just came in from holding puppies at the pet shop.  It’s a sure-fire elixir for my heart when world-weariness demands a quick pick-me-up.  And just between you and me, when there’s no pet store handy I sometimes fall into looking at puppies online or watching reruns of “The Dog Whisperer” on Netflicks.   Old friends marvel at this change that’s come over me after years of a skinny-hearted religion that had no serious room for animals.

Who doesn’t delight in the stories of Saint Francis preaching to birds, or leading the village’s terrorizing wolf into repentance?  As certainly as the human heart longs for beauty and redemption, it dreams of a garden where man and beast live together in loving trust and harmony.  Eons before National Geographic turned it into a TV series the Dog Whisperer was scripted into our hearts by a loving Father.  “So the Lord God formed from the ground all the wild animals and all the birds of the sky. He brought them to the man to see what he would call them and the man chose a name for each one.” (Genesis 2:19).  Our good Father gave pets to Adam and invited his Son to name them.  “Fill the earth and govern it”. (That’s kingdom language.)  “Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.” (Genesis 1:28).   We were created to love the animal world, to train our furry friends, and to bring them into their full potential.

Before Cesar Millan, (the “Dog Whisperer”),  was Saint Francis;  Before Francis was Adam;  And before Adam was Yahweh dreaming of a Kingdom, and writing His dream in our hearts.  Those little fellows at the rescue shelter?  They’re anticipating the Kingdom, too!