The perils of eating can be an outlet for service


I cooked some chicken drumsticks and took the meat off the bones. As I did so, I was careful that not even a small bone went into the food dish that would eventually become a meal for Baby, who is a very picky eater. The gristle went with other parts to be put out for the cats.

While Baby had to wait for her food to finish, the neighborhood cars and three kittens were waiting on the deck and dived right into their windfall.

A while later, I noticed one of the kittens had a piece of gristle hung in his front teeth and couldn’t seem to get it out. I was concerned but there was nothing I could do, as those little ones are wild when it comes to people. They come to the deck to look for food but race for cover if a human appears.

I remembered a similar instance when on a rescue squad run in Kentucky.

It’s been many years, and I don’t remember the details of the call, but we must have thought it would be a DOA call in a home because our squad captain, who was also the county coroner, was with us.

Upon our arrival, we were immediately informed the patient had passed away. No doubt we were too late when the call was originally placed.

As our captain took over the scene, he had no need for us, so we were in a waiting mode. It seems to me there were several of us, anyway more than usual for an ambulance call. While we waited, one of the men made friends with a dog in the vicinity.

He soon discovered the dog could not close its mouth because a bone had become lodged in the roof of its mouth right behind the front teeth. Try as it would, the dog could not dislodge that offending bone. Thus, he could neither eat not drink.

Now, even untrained dogs have more common sense than we give them credit for. He seemed to understand our squad members meant him no harm and allowed them to work in his mouth without fighting them at all.

After some struggle, the bone was out! The dog was free and happy. The squad members were happy. And I suspect I’m not the only one who remembers that run these many years later.

Oh! And the kitten? I didn’t see it again all day, and, yes, I worried about it. Yes, I even prayed for it. But this morning, he was at the deck hoping for breakfast with nothing caught in his mouth. I was relieved and happy.

I was reminded that something as insignificant as a small bone from a beef roast or a little piece of gristle may become very important in my witness for my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. That “small” sin might be the very thing that stands in the way of my life being a testimony – the very testimony that someone else needs to become acquainted with the One who died for us.

That sin can be removed by simply asking Jesus for cleansing once again. He is not only able and willing, but even eager to do just that.

Don’t let the bones and gristle (sins) of life deter your testimony for Jesus. Love Him. Trust Him. Abide in His loving presence day by day.