I’d totally forgotten about this, having to babysit a friend’s little dog for half a day. The dog taught me something valuable…
I babysat a friend’s little dog named Itsy-Bitsy. She sits outside the glass sliding door and whines to get inside. She’s about 7 or 8 years old, which is very mature for a little dog, yet she behaves like a puppy. At first, I give in to her whining and helplessness, but after tiring of it, I decide to be firm and tell her no-no. Finally, she stops. This makes me philosophical about humans.
Just because we’re adults doesn’t mean we’re not going to find time to whine or be illogically helpless. Age is no obstacle to abusing the kindness of others. The best way to handle whining people is to tell them to get busy doing something, take charge of their own lives, and we stop trying to solve their problems for them. Even God condemns whiners and complainers. He destroyed thousands of Israelites in the wilderness who acted like Itsy-Bitsy today.
Why do people whine and complain? Lazy, scared, uneducated, greedy, users, selfish? Itsy-Bitsy is scared—being in a strange place—but she can instead be the type of dog that explores her new surroundings and acts friendly with our dog, playing, sleeping, and doing other dog things. No, she chooses to sit helplessly by the door and whine uselessly all day. Me running out all the time to comfort her just makes her worse! She expects it and becomes more demanding in a variety of irritating ways. What a learning experience!
Remember from my last post, I found my 1998 attempt to keep a diary. Reading this entry reminded me that I had taken up playing the piano. For over a year, we babysat an older upright for friends and I took advantage. My parakeet loved it!
I’ve been learning how to play the piano. What excitement! I have played the guitar all my life and one of the differences between the two instruments is monumental for me. Stringed instruments generally utilize only one hand to play music while the other hand helps the one hand along. The piano requires both hands to play, each hand and finger playing of its own accord, each making its own sound. This is hard for this guitar player, because her left hand does not want to act separately from the right, independently, you know, like both hands want to go up and down at the same time. It’s been almost a year now since I started on the piano, and the mental operation looks successful, with both sides of my brain flying together or alone. What a great feeling of accomplishment!
I decided to clean out my filing cabinet during this Corona virus time and found an old tablet diary in my handwriting from back in May 14, 1998. I typed the entries into the computer. Some of them I’m sharing, after editing…here’s the first one:
I sit in the love seat alone, stretched out, reading a book and watching TV in between commercials. My dog jumps up and visits with me or lies by my side. My parakeet flies over and visits, too, chasing the dog off of the couch. My husband sits in the easy chair next to me, shuffling papers, reading the Bible.
The gas fireplace burns brightly and the dog lies in front of it now and then. He yawns, sees me watching him, and comes to visit. The bird flies over, the dog leaves, the bird leaves, the husband shuffles papers. A continuous pleasantness. Quiet love rules at this present pleasant moment.
Ethos is the distinctive essence of a culture, era, or community as shown in its beliefs and ambitions. Some synonyms are character, atmosphere, and mood.
Spiritually: the culture of God’s Kingdom comes from Heaven itself, from the words of the Holy Spirit in the Bible, from the love of God and Jesus. We’re to be very happy in the Lord, and again, be very happy (Philippians 4:4). As Jesus modeled on earth, His kingdom is full of love, good works, and worshiping God, and all eyes are to focus on heavenly things more than earthly things (Col. 3) …ethos.
(Of course, if there are citizens in God’s kingdom who don’t behave in sync with the ethos, they are aliens, criminals, spies, whatever…)
The ability of certain metals or alloys to conduct an electric current with almost no resistance. Superconductivity usually happens close to absolute zero, about -459°F (below 0), but has also been seen at temperatures as high as -200°F (below 0).
Spiritually: Some of our trials, tragedies, and losses are unbearable, but as with Joseph, Daniel, and Jesus—at the absolute zero of suffering, that’s when God’s unimaginable power can flow unresistingly through us to let Him blaze in glory for those around us…superconductivity.