The big, yellow dog on the porch

Posted: Monday, October 31, 2016 | Alphonso Ashworth | Politics

This presidential election may be one of the most nail-biting in half a century. The tangles are tightening, and soon we will have a new president -- whether we like him/her or not.

The candidates' lies and deceptions are accumulating like a lake effect snow in Buffalo. The political hacks cannot plow fast enough, and based on the polling data, the voters are not pleased with either choice.

It sort of reminds me of a story my great uncle shared with me prior to the end of his earthly journey. He was dying from cancer, and his 80+ years on earth would soon come to a close. To this day, I am not sure if he was trying to ease my mind or just trying to make me laugh. Either way, the story has been shared many times, and it still causes me to wonder:

While visiting an aunt, Willie saw a huge, yellow dog on the front porch. He yelled, "Ooh! Look at that huge lion!"

Shocked at what he just said, his aunt responded, "Willie, you know that is not a lion. Go to the corner and pray, then ask God for forgiveness."

Willie did as he was told.

A few minutes later, the aunt was curious and asked, "Did you pray?"

"Yes, ma'am," answered Willie.

"Did you ask God for forgiveness?"

"Yes ma'am"

"Then what did God tell you?"

Willie grinned and said, "God said, 'Don't worry, Willie. The first time I saw that dog, I thought it was a lion, too.'"

Whether or not the tale is true, I believe it can serve as a valuable lesson.

Our political leaders lie to us, and when they get caught lying, they tell more lies to try and cover it up. But unlike the character in my great uncle's story, they forget about the power of asking for forgiveness. Christians know we are forgiven once we confess our sin and repent. We must turn away and never return. Jesus demonstrated this when speaking to those who were prepared to stone the woman who had committed adultery:

"So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, 'He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.' And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, 'Woman, where are those thine accusers? Hath no man condemned thee?' She said, 'No man, Lord.' And Jesus said unto her, 'Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.'" -- John 8:7-11

So, beloved, when you see what appears to be a big, yellow dog on your front porch, look very closely before you tell someone a lie.

We must pray for our leaders and ask that they will repent and ask God to forgive them. Because God's Word makes it clear that we also are even as others.