Advent Meditations “Obedience”

Sunday in both services, online and in-person, Axel, our German Shepherd, was “live.” I brought him to online worship so that the online folks could meet him and I figured “why not use the same example in person? It will either work or it won’t – both are teachable points.”

Teachable because a lesson we can learn from our furry friends about our spirituality and the nature of God is around the idea of obedience.

One of the things we’ve (aka – Tom) have been trying to teach Axel is to obey commands. Mainly regarding the issue of doggie self-control. He’s food motivated (aren’t many of us??), so one of the actions we’ve been working on is to make him wait until he is given the “go ahead” to eat.

Luckily, he actually followed directions yesterday in both services, waited until directed, and then dove into his food.


According to the master of much knowledge, Wikipedia, Obedience, in human behavior, is a form of “social influence in which a person yields to explicit instructions or orders from an authority figure”. Obedience is generally distinguished from compliance, which is behavior influenced by peers, and from conformity, which is behavior intended to match that of the majority.

I’m sure great “dog researchers” know what causes them to be obedient/disobedient. But I do not. Sometimes Axel listens, but other times, he just cannot help himself, especially if it is pertaining to food.

Today is the first day of the Christmas work week. And writing a devotion completely slipped my mind until I was going through my email tonight and realized I never sent one today. Frustration ensued because, throughout Advent, consistency has been present. Monday – Friday, you’ve had some thoughts/reflections. Today, I simply got so busy doing stuff preparing for the future, I forgot the spiritual connection piece for the here and now.

One of the first lessons God taught God’s followers was to “Be still and know that I am God.”

What a lesson to obey!

Knowing “about” God and “knowing” God are two entirely different things.

As we enter into the final stretch before Christmas, what could it look like if we actually pause and take a breath? What if we practice obedience and be still, knowing that there is a Love that runs through us and unites all things? That Love was revealed to us through the Christ child.

Take a few minutes now . . .


Ponder the transformational power of Love that is revealed to you in your life.

Obey . . .

Grace and Peace,