My Life as a Dog ~ Obeying the Master

Sign showing a man with a dog on a leash

As requested, here are the sermons I delivered at worship services on October 20, 2013.

Before reading the sermons, click and read the Bible verses I’ll refer to:

Psalm 19:7–14
John 8:3–11
John 14:10–24
Matthew 22:34–40
2 Timothy 4:1–5

Youth Message ~ YOU’RE NOT THE BOSS OF ME!

What’s a boss?

When grownups talk about their boss, they probably mean the person at their job who tells them what to do, maybe the person who owns the company they work for. The dictionary says a boss can be anyone who makes decisions, exercises authority, controls, dominates, and so on.

Have you ever heard someone say, “You’re not the boss of me”? What was the situation?

I thought that was a modern expression from a TV show or something. But I looked it up and discovered it’s been said in books for more than a hundred years. Usually the situation is that an older brother or sister told a kid to do something, or to stop doing something. The kid doesn’t want to obey and is sick of getting ordered around by someone who has no right to give orders. So the kid snaps back, “You’re not the boss of me!”

Now, if [a parishioner] said to me, “Linda, shut up and sit down,” I could say, “You’re not the boss of me!” and keep right on talking, because I don’t have to obey [the parishioner]. I wouldn’t actually say that, because that would be pretty rude. Saying that could get you in trouble, especially when the person telling you “Do this, don’t do that” really is the boss of you!

Who really is the boss of you? Who has the right to tell kids what to do? Parents? Teachers? Those are the main people you’re supposed to obey.

But there is one more, who’s really important.

I looked up another word on The definition was: “a person who has authority, control, or power over others; a master, chief, or ruler. One who exercises restraint or direction over; dominates; commands.” Sounds a lot like the definition of a boss, right?

The word I looked up was Lord. For thousands of years, people have called God “Lord,” and Christians call Jesus our Lord and our Master. Why? Because he is the boss of us. He’s the boss of everyone.


Well-trained dogs

I get a kick out of watching the annual Westminster Club Dog Show on television, seeing all the various breeds with their different sizes and shapes and temperaments. One thing they all have in common is being trained to obey commands. They sit. They stay. They jog around the ring on a leash.

I’ve never seen one bite the judge. They don’t jump all over him and sniff his pants. Sometimes a dog gets overly frisky, but generally show dogs behave very well, thanks to their training.

Continue reading

To the Ends of the Earth

Photo of a mailbox on a country road
How does the Lord deliver his words of comfort and challenge to the people who need to hear them?

Oh, he has his ways!

In my last post, I described how I wrote a collection of hymns and faith songs and filed them away while the Lord assigned me other kinds of writing.

But that wasn’t the end of the music story …

Continue reading

Writing Songs for the Lord

Yearning for the Gift of Music

Photo of a monarch butterfly on pink weed blossoms

I can do all this through him who gives me strength.
– Philippians 4:13 (NIV)

How does a person who can barely tell a quarter note from a Quarter Pounder write a book full of original hymns and faith songs?

Continue reading