Ozzy’s Bad Habit
My dog, Ozzy, gets fed twice a day, plus treats. He has never been underweight. He has a great life and if he asks for more food, he gets it. He does ask. If he’s hungry and his food bowl is empty, he’ll knock it around the kitchen until his needs are met.
Still, I have to police the trash.
What is in the trash that is so appealing to Ozzy? Once it was burned ketchup from the meat loaf pan. By burned, I mean, BLACK. Other times it’s paper napkins or paper towels, Q-tips, various wrappers or potato peels. Sometimes there is food in his bowl, which he ignores to go digging for something in the trash. Whatever it is, it’s trash and not as good as the food sitting untouched in his bowl.
I don’t know why the trash is so appealing.
Our Tendency to Sin
I will admit, I have opted for “trash” instead of “good food”, figuratively speaking. Sometimes the trash has an appeal. There is something tantalizing about it. Unfortunately, it is only after you find yourself wallowing in the trash, the realization set in; this is trash, there has to be something better. In writing about Moses, Hebrews 11:25, admits there is some pleasure in sin, albeit fleeting. The pleasure is not in a 1:1 ratio with the trouble sin causes. The pleasure is limited and fleeting, the problems, usually compound and lasting.
Still, there is a tendency to rush toward sin; to dig in the trash. God made a clear distinction in Deuteronomy 30:11-20. God states it’s not a hard decision or difficult to understand: life and prosperity or death and destruction.
The trashcan is there and available for rooting through, but God gives the “obvious” advice in v 19; choose life. The reasons are interesting: first for our descendants, but more importantly,
“that you may love the Lord your God and listen to His voice
and hold fast to Him. For the Lord is your life…”
Along with the tendency to dig in the trash is the tendency to blame someone else for putting you in the trashcan. It’s easy to blame others for giving you trash while you look at the good food others possess. Sometimes, it’s easy to blame God for your trashcan experience. It’s difficult to live both in and out of the trash can. Therefore, God tells you simply to stay out, for your own good; life and love are easier outside of the trashcan. He has prosperity and life for you, if that is what you choose.
If you are rooting around in the trashcan, you can climb out anytime. God is waiting to refresh you, to give you a new start, to make life livable.
Father, Remind me daily to stay out of the trash. Remind me no matter how good the trash may look, it’s still trash. Help me to choose Your way and the good things You have for me. Help me to love You, hold fast to You and find my life in You.