I just spent two days with people who love God, America, each other, and...me.
Most of my time - like, uh, most of my time - is spent with irascibles, irregulars, and irreconcilables.
Rather than spending most of my time with people who are fun and love God, America, each other, and wanna make love not war, my calendar is cluttered with miscreants who are miserable, live to make misery for others, hurt and hurt, and...
Most of my time is spent with pejoratives not positives.
Catch my drift?
If it were not for exercising my life and ministry in a Psalm 62 kinda way, I would have joined the plethora of pastors who got so bummed and burned out that they've been selling insurance or something else since...
Of course, it's not just limited to people like me.
Most people who got into public services like education, politics, law enforcement, food service, law, real estate, government, and just about anything else dealing with animal behavior know what I mean.
We spend most of our time hanging out with people who burn and bum out rather than build up.
We spend most of our time with people who drain rather than energize us.
It's the distinction that Teilhard made between reflective and reflexive animals.
A minority still thinks before acting.
How will my behavior affect others?
Most animals don't.
How will my behavior affect me?
Most animals care more about themselves than others.
Most animals will use bad behaviors to attract attention; and once they're successful in gaining our attention through those bad behaviors, they repeat and repeat and repeat those bad behaviors until we stop enabling 'em.
That's why we have training classes for dogs and should have training classes for...
I'm reminded of my time with children during last Sunday's worship service.
I told them about a salesman who knocked on the door of a house with a light on in a rear room.
He hears a voice from the room: "Come on in."
The voice keeps repeating, "Come on in."
So he goes to the rear room and sees the voice is coming from a parrot; and, simultaneously, he sees two Dobermans inching toward him with teeth showing.
As the dogs keep inching toward the salesman, the parrot keeps repeating, "Come on in."
The nervous salesman says to the parrot, "Listen, you stupid parrot, is that all you can say?"
"No," the bird replies, "Sic 'em boys!"
I had a dog.
He was a little off; and had a penchant for biting.
Fortunately, I learned long ago that the easiest way to make peace with dogs is to open hands for them rather than shake fists or wave sticks or yell and scream at them.
Most often, open hands work.
They symbolize peace and a desire to get along.
Fists, sticks, yelling, and screaming alert dogs to probable danger and conflict.
I think the same is true for...
Blessings and Love!
So what do those of us in public service who do a "nice" job do when the administrators and paper pushers above us say, "Wow, I really like the way you open your hands! Here are some more animals for you to train. We're not going to give you resources or more space, but we'd like you to open your hands even WIDER and train these ugly animals STAT."
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