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Miranda Writes: Bone or Steak?




by Omar Miranda



I just looked out of my living room window and watched my neighbor’s two dogs ignore a food bowl that was overflowing with perfectly good doggie kibble and then proceed to knock over a trash container, root through the garbage, and, finally, fight over a nasty old bone for 15 minutes.

So what’s the big deal? That’s what dogs do, right? Dogs love bones. They love to chew on them because . . . they just do!

Well, what I didn’t tell you was that the moment the one dog won his “prize,” he promptly went to my backyard, waited, watched (for the other dog, I assume), and began digging a hole so that he could hide his bone for later. Then, after hiding the bone, he immediately went back to the garbage and began fighting another dog for another bone! I’m sure he buried that one as well.

This behavior intrigued me. And the more I thought about it, the more troubled I became. So I did some research online and found some facts about why dogs chew bones.² For nutritional value they chew up the bones, crushing them to get to the high-calorie marrow on the inside and also to get calcium. Another reason is to remove plaque from their teeth, such as when you go to the dentist to get your teeth cleaned. And, finally, they do it because it just feels great. In fact, the Web site states that “when dogs chew, endorphins are released from the brain. These chemicals are thought to make dogs feel good.” It also said: “The instinct to chew bones is so strong that dogs and puppies will chew on anything they can get a hold of if bones or suitable chewing treats are not available to satisfy the craving. This can lead to chewing on furniture, shoes, or other valuables.”

OK, very interesting, Omar. We now know why dogs chew bones. Thanks for this great piece of information.

Well, this made me think about a Web site that I just found called www.fightthenewdrug.org. I’ll explain the connection in a minute.

Why would a dog want to chew a bone? There’s nothing on it, right? If I gave a dog the choice of either a bare bone or a juicy steak—even one that was raw—the dog would choose the steak every time! And he wouldn’t bury it right away, either. That’s the whole point! Do you see the similarities between what today’s teens are doing to themselves related to sex and porn, and what dogs do with bones?

You see, God has given us an awesome gift in sex and sexuality, and when we choose to use it God’s way, within a married, monogamous, male-female relationship, we become hooked to the one person we’re supposed to be hooked to: our husband or wife. This is like choosing to eat the steak! But when we decide to ignore the steak and root through the garbage of Satan’s sin-filled world of me-focused sex, we end up fighting for and winning a bone—and for what? So we can bury it and root around the garbage some more? I know I’ve talked about sex and porn before, but today I wanted to let you know that I’ve come across the wonderful Web site www.fightthenewdrug.org that honestly addresses the reality and seriousness of the fact that pornography is a very dangerous drug that can damage multiple facets of our lives.³ The Web site is specifically written for youth, and it takes the argument one step closer to the truth: that a life lived God’s way is the best way. 

You may ask why I’m writing about pornography again. Well, I’ll tell you. I keep interacting with scores and scores of teens and their families who have been damaged, devastated, and destroyed either directly or indirectly by pornography. And these are Christian kids and families, too!

I’m addressing this issue again because the secular, anything-goes, if-it-feels-good-do-it culture is starting to see the inescapable consequences of their bad choices, which is good. But the question is Where will they turn for help? They’ve got to be able to turn to the church and see people living lives filled with power, filled with purpose, filled with joy. Real joy—not quick-fix, temporary, flash-in-the-pan stuff of the world. As Christians we need to “get rid of everything that slows us down, especially the sin that just won’t let go. And we must be determined to run the race that is ahead of us. We must keep our eyes on Jesus, who leads us and makes our faith complete. He endured the shame of being nailed to a cross, because he knew that later on he would be glad he did. Now he is seated at the right side of God’s throne! So keep your mind on Jesus, who put up with many insults from sinners. Then you won’t get discouraged and give up” (Hebrews 12:1-3, CEV).4 As Christians we need to be sure that we’re drinking from the only fountain that will truly quench our thirst once and for all (John 4:13-15). Once we do that, we’ll be overflowing with so much that others will want to drink from the same well that will forever quench their thirst too.

I challenge you to go to this Web site—www.fightthenewdrug.org—and sign the pledge, check out the resources, and then pass this information on to someone you know who’s addicted to pornography, or who knows someone who is.  
There’s no reason we need to be chewing on dry, dead bones when we could be eating juicy, tasty steaks.

Until next time, remember these things: God’s way is always the best way. Life is full of decisions, so make yours good ones. Put God first in your life, and you can’t go wrong.

Feel free to contact me: you can e-mail me at omarmiranda@earthlink.net; or you can keep up with me on Facebook; or you can read more of my stuff on Miranda Writes, at www.insightmagazine.org; or you can check me out or send me a message at my Web site, thriveatlife.org; or you can reach me via snail mail (slow!) at the address printed below.

In Christ,
Omar Miranda, certified Christian counselor

Abundant Life Ministries
155 Earl Street
Plainville, GA 30733
Phone: 1-770-354-2912

¹Any mention of “meat” or “steak” or eating of said “meat” or “steak” in the title or the body of this column in no way endorses the eating of meat and is in fact for devotional purposes only and the opinion of only the author. The author is sharing his opinion and his opinions alone and releases all the employees of Insight and the Review and Herald Publishing Association and any member of their respective families of any civil and criminal liability should someone decide to try to eat an actual steak . . . or any real meat product.
²www.ehow.com/facts_5408628_do-dogs-chew-bones_.html.
³You’ll find a lot of good info at fightthenewdrug.org, but I can’t guarantee that all the material or links on it fit with Bible truth. Just be sure to read with discernment and browse carefully, as you would (hopefully) anywhere on the Web.
4Scripture quotations identified CEV are from the Contemporary English Version. Copyright © American Bible Society 1991, 1995. Used by permission.

Omar Miranda is a Christian counselor with 20 years’ experience working with youth in public and private middle and high schools. He’s married and has two kids. He enjoys teaching the youth at his church, reading, writing, gardening, and camping. He’s a recovering knucklehead who spent a lot of time in the past doing stupid stuff away from God. He’s been back with God for years now and is eager to share what he’s learned from his experiences by answering any questions you may have about life, the Christian life, Jesus, spiritual matters, and relationships in his column, Miranda Writes.
 





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