I WAS REMINDED


I saw something fascinating the other day. I was in a hotel and there was a large German shepherd that was with a man in the lobby of the hotel. The man wasn't blind, so I'm not really sure why the dog was there, but one thing I'm certain about was the dog appeared mature and well taught. No moving, barking, or unnecessary staring. It just seemed as if he'd been in that environment before.

A. Few days later, I also saw a large dog at the airport. Now I knew the purpose of this animal, and it was to sniff for drugs, explosives, or other harmful materials. He similar to the dog at the hotel seemed very calm in carrying out his duties. These encounters made me wonder if dogs had our intellect what would they say about us? Well that question can't be answered, but the one that can would be: what do people think about us? You need not worry about that answer because it's a new year, so people might as well see a new you!

The keys to a successful new year would be: REALIZE, RECOGNIZE, & RESPOND.

First, REALIZE that you are going to face some adversity and difficulties in 2016. Jesus clearly conveyed that when he said, "in this world you will have trouble/tribulations." (John 16:33). So stop being shocked when trials come your way, he told you they were coming!

Second key after you realize is to RECOGNIZE that these trials are your training ground which helps prepare you to assist others and protect them from impending dangers. You've got to go through, so others can get thru! Those dogs have gone thru countless hours of trainings to help prevent humans from being hurt. "All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. " (‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭1‬:‭3-4‬ NLT)

Finally, once you realize and recognize, then you must RESPOND. What do I mean you ask? You must " count it all joy, when you face trials of every kind..."(James 1:2-4). "You must bless the Lord at all times" (Ps 24:1), " you must not be surprised at the painful trials that you are suffering, but rejoice..." (1 Peter 4:12).

Why? Again, this is part of your training process to help others.

The dogs I recently saw reminded me that training is essential to helping others. Next time instead of complaining, you should thank God for training and trusting you to assist others. In God's own unique way, I was reminded.

Kirkland Smith

Sr.Pastor of Grace Bible Fellowship of Antioch

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