Chuck Terrill: Readers respond to story of Charlie and the cow manure
Our dog, Charlie, is now officially famous.
Occasionally, I get a response to an article I write for the Cassville Democrat. Last week's essay about our little Yorkie, Charlie, drew more responses than usual. I think that people identified with the little dog, who delighted in immersing himself in cow manure. Maybe all of us have been up to our neck, so to speak, in times past. We also remember times when it was nobody's fault but our own. And, maybe all of us can identify with the need to be rescued from a stinking situation.
Some people enjoyed the humor of the essay. One email I received said, “I just finished reading the paper, and I think you topped them all. Too bad Mary didn't have a camera to record your latest escapade with Charlie, the dog. I'm sure she would have received the prize for the funniest home video. Knowing some of your brilliant ways of solving clean-up problems at home, I could hardly wait to read the ending. It sounds like a new utility sink may be in store.” She obviously thought I would run him though the dishwasher. I would have, if he had been a potato or a hub cap.
One reader appreciated the article for another reason. His response told his story. He lost his wife, his children, and his home through divorce. The divorce came about because of his alcoholism. As painful as it all was, he knew that it was due to his own reckless choices. He came to faith in Jesus Christ because of the deep remorse he experienced. In time, he was restored to his family, and now lives an alcohol-free life. He identified with Charlie the dog, who needed a lift from the circumstances created by his own bad choices. This man knew what it was like to be rescued by a loving hand.
Another response came from a woman, who wrote: “Your article about Charlie and Jesus was great!!!! Good analogy!!!!” I was excited by her note because nothing I have ever written before received eight exclamation marks in two short sentences. I e-mailed her back and said, “I'll stop short of saying I baptized the little sinner. But he did get immersed with lots and lots of shampoo.” Isn't a good cleansing what we all need? I am so thankful that God has provided the opportunity for a new start through Jesus Christ.
If you didn't get a chance to read last week's article, or you’d like to share it with a friend, you can access it at www.casvilledemocrat.com. Type my name (Chuck Terrill) into the search box.
“...if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:9).
Chuck Terrill, who has doctorates from Master Theological Seminary and Trinity Seminary, is the senior minister at First Christian Church in Cassville. He may be reached at 471-847-2460.