Sunday, January 9, 2011

Going to the Dogs

Something happened today that was a first for me. As we gathered with our church, one of the host family's dogs walked over to me. He apparently wanted me to pet him. This happened as we were all sitting together, taking turns in praying, reading scripture, encouraging one another, etc. Although it may seem like this would have been distracting, it wasn't. I enjoyed it and so did the dog. He ended up sitting by me on the couch.

What I love about this is that it was very real. We meet as families in homes. Dogs live in homes, too. Therefore, dogs are most likely going to find a way to be part of the gathering (especially if there is food - which there always is).

If our Sunday fellowships were ceremonies, then I'm certain dogs would not be allowed. The reality is that dogs, as wonderful as they are, tend to mess up anything ceremonial. Since our gatherings are informal in nature, dogs can be present - as long as they aren't a distraction.

I believe this is how church should be. Churches are families. Family gatherings should be joyful and relaxed times of fellowship. This is what we had today. Nothing was prescribed. Nothing was required. There were no time constraints.

I'm not particularly a dog person. Our only pet at home is a guinea pig. Despite this, I'm thankful that dogs are allowed when we get together. It feels real. It is relaxed.

5 comments:

Jonathan said...

What next! Are you going to say dogs go to heaven? Or just the dogs that go to church go to heaven? :)

Hmmm... come to think of it. This may be a good argument for church gatherings in homes. If families want their dogs to go to heaven (which all kids would agree about), then the dog's should be included at the church gatherings. Seems logical to me.

I'm not sure about cats or guinea pigs though, sorry...

Eric said...

Jonathan,

I think only the elect dogs go to heaven.

reformedlostboy said...

dogs that fellowship and a bird that participates vocally. I remeber it well. I think that the bird speaks in tongues though. I don't understand a word he says and it is never edifying. More like a noisy gong or clanging symbol if you ask me.

Eric said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Eric said...

Bobby,

The bird was pretty quiet today. Maybe he now understands that in order for him to speak we need someone with the gift of bird interpretation.