Barnabas and God never cease to amaze me! God uses him to teach me so much about life!
Barnabas loves to play catch but he rarely follows the rules. I throw a rope that has a ball on it, he runs after it. The most difficult part for him to learn is the part about bringing it back to me and giving it to me so I can throw it again. He loses out if he keeps what he has been given because he loses the fun of chasing after it again!
I must admit that Barnabas is making progress though. He is beginning to bring the toy back to me more often. He still often wants to play tug of war with me as he clamps tightly on his toy and pulls back from me. Sometimes I force him to give it up by opening his mouth (probably not the best training technique). Still, he is learning. He really does know what I mean by the word "give". More times than not, he half-heartedly gives the toy back to me. I give him praise and immediately throw it again so that he has more fun.
Isn't that so much like our God? He gives us something for our enjoyment, it gives us joy but it would give us more joy if we would not cling to it. It probably would bring more pleasure to give it away at God's command than imaginable...it could be anything...money, time, possessions. God prompts to give 'it' away and I pull back and play tug of war with God. It is as if I am saying with my actions, "No, God, you gave it to me to enjoy!".
What have I missed because I did not release the gift God has given to me when He asked me to? How many times have I missed God's blessing when I've wanted to play tug of war with God rather than release what he has asked me to give away?
I wonder...I see Barnabas making progress...am I?