Good dogs are obedient, loving, loyal, protective, and friendly. They honor their masters, bark only at the right times, and inspire us to be better through heroism, perseverance, and selflessness. Dogs have weak moments, too. They poop blue, jump out of car windows, and, at times, might be nicknamed the “Devil Dog.” Better Than Our Dogs uses funny and engaging stories to illustrate timeless lessons from the book of James. Each chapter offers practical advice, challenges readers to determine which dog they are most like, and encourages everyone to be better today. Better friends. Better people. Better followers of God.

Better Than Our Dogs asks readers to determine for themselves what dog they are and what kind of person they want to be. Are they like Socrates who eats a blue toilet cake out of spite or are they Darby who was a light to everyone around her? By using real dog stories as an anchor for each chapter, readers can consider what type of person, friend, and follower they are in a nonconfrontational way. They can choose to be better in places the book of James states we really need to focus on to be the best we can be.

ACC Faulty Wins Fiction Prize

ACC: John J. Murray

Better Than Our Dogs

I enjoyed reading this book. It’s clever, inspirational, and pleasant to read. Kudos to the author!

Amazon customer

Better Than Our Dogs

A good tale that explores the subject matter well.

Alexa Sommers

Better Than Our Dogs

Don’t wait to look up. Don’t wait to be obedient. Don’t wait to be humble. Don’t wait to be kind or show love. Don’t wait to be better than our dogs. Don’t wait. Be better today.” This is an inspiring and thought-provoking book that will tug on your heartstrings but also bring a smile on your face. I adore the unique way the author came with all these lessons. In such a refreshing way, this book makes us think about our spiritual journey. The writing style is easy to understand. The beauty of it is in its simplicity. This is a special and heartwarming book, especially for all dog lovers. The things this author and his wife went through with their dogs are very entertaining, but also emotional. The author’s love for God and dogs shines through these pages, and it is contagious. I would recommend it to all age groups, especially Christians and dog owners.


Better Than Our Dogs

When having faith and embracing it becomes a struggle, take a lesson from this book. The author brings having a faith based life back to basics by using his pet as the example of how obedience to ones master embraces the path to a stress free and rewarding life. Faith at its most basic is beautifully portrayed in the examples given.


Better Than Our Dogs

Full disclosure: John was a student in my English class in high school many years ago. I am not surprised that he wrote an interesting book. When a person writes about something he really cares about and there is direct emotional involvement, it brings the reader in to that world, which is the whole purpose of writing. Sometimes writers do things that get in the way like trying to be an expert or showing off one’s knowledge, but that doesn’t happen in this writing. I would describe it as honest, sincere, and straightforward. When you admit to being insecure, it makes a reader respect that vulnerability. When you lose a battle with a pet, the reader thinks, “Yep, I’ve been there.” That greatly reduces the psychological distance between the reader and writer. The second rule of writing is “Show, don’t tell,” and this book isn’t really a telling of stories as it was a showing. That happens when there are enough details for the reader to imagine being there, whether it’s a description of poop on a couch, the look in a dog’s eye, or a description of barking, behavior around other dogs, or racing around the yard. It all works. Another strength of this book was its readability. I sometimes have a problem with books full of jargon, trite language, or the sheer number of typos or grammatical issues. This book is eminently accessible, a quick read. I’d also like to focus on one specific chapter. The chapter on The Devil Dog was one of the funniest things I’ve read in a long time. I laughed out loud. I don’t mean to be inconsiderate in reacting to a predicament with Socrates, the devil dog, gone to the dark side temporarily, but still, it was hilarious. I wasn’t laughing at the author or the stages by which Socrates healed – um, okay, that’s exactly what I was laughing at – because it was funny. Something that funny usually begins with a core that is humorous, but even then, I’ve seen writers try too hard, and the humor falls flat. That didn’t happen in this book. Each page was a new predicament and I laughed as the crazy events built on each other until the end. A final thing I found interesting was the initial prompting of the book, a need to plan something worthwhile for a Bible study invitation and all the pressure that presents. The interesting part is that we never know where some challenge will lead, and in this case, it lead to parables grounded in real life, pets and the crazy things they do and how we react.

Kurt Haberl

Better Than Our Dogs

This is a fantastic read for all ages. It leads you to think differently effortlessly and evaluate our everyday lives. The use of a “man’s best friend” to break down religious passages to those of us who are not as versed as we’d like to be really makes it easy to follow his guidance and the scriptures. Could not put it down and finished it in one sitting! I hope I’m a DarbyJohn J. Murray Jr

Sammie M.

Better Than Our Dogs

Absolutely amazing! This book blessed my heart so much. The Author done a brilliant job. At times I laughed and at times I had tears in my eyes. I definitely found myself examining my own heart as I read it. I’ve owned my own dog grooming and dog boarding business for 23 years now, so I truly get to be surrounded by dogs everyday. I feel like God planted my feet exactly where he wanted me to be with my business. I tell people all the time I have the best job in the world. Dog’s truly are man’s best friend. Thank you for writing such a inspirational book. I have already recommended this book to several people and will continue to recommend it. If you love God and you love dogs, it’s a must read.

Kelley Luttrell

Better Than Our Dogs

This avid reader guarantees Better Than Our Dogs is the best thing you will read this week, this month, and maybe this year. The author’s funny and touching stories of his own dogs intertwined with lessons from the book of James left me ready to “look up” and let God guide me. I laughed at the dogs’ antics and cried at their defeats. I love the use of photographs throughout the story. There are just enough to show off the dogs’ personalities, but not so many that they take away from the story – they only add more smiles. The lessons in the book made me consider my own life and the type of person God wants me to be. I love that the book teaches without preaching and reminds us all that we cannot wait until tomorrow to get better – we need to take advantage of each day He gives us.


Better Than Our Dogs

The approach of this book was interesting. I’m not usually a fan of the parable take on things, but the author did a good job of interweaving the story lines. Good book.


Better Than Our Dogs

Wonderful book that everyone can relate to…. even if you’ve never owned a dog. Well written and inspiring! It makes you laugh and is also very thought provoking. Great read!


Better Than Our Dogs

This is definitely a feel good book that makes you think about your own spiritual journey. I would highly recommend it!


Better Than Our Dogs

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The story was written in a relatable fashion, partially through the life of dogs. I often had a smile on my face while reading. We all know how we are supposed to act, this will help us pay attention to our actions. Beautiful story.

Helen Harkins

Better Than Our Dogs

The book is a quick yet thought provoking read. It inspires one to look at life from the simpler viewpoint as inspired by a most loyal pet. The examples provided made me laugh, yet think.


Better Than Our Dog

This book tells us how to live a life in obedience to God’s commands while giving us entertaining stories of the author’s canine companions. It is well written with great doses of dog humor all dog owners can relate too. I wholeheartedly recommend it.

Philip Patterson

Better Than Our Dogs

I was intrigued by the dog and book of James metaphor. The book did not disappoint! I laughed and I cried. The storytelling kept me engaged and I couldn’t put it down. I would’ve never made the connection between entanglement, Israelites, and canine anal glands, yet I did enjoy it. Thanks for sharing, John Murray.

Heather A. Pierce

Better Than Our Dogs

BETTER THAN OUR DOGS, is a book about spiritual growth through the use of the authors faith based stories. He tells us how God expects us to live our lives through his experiences with his dogs, while tying these thoughts back to the central theme of looking at how we really live our lives in comparison. The book was easy and interesting to read because of the use of real life stories, at times really funny.

John P

Better Than Our Dogs

Better Than Our Dogs is a breath of fresh air. I found the book to be entertaining, insightful and educational with a solid faith based message that drive the points home while not being “preachy”. I thought author’s use of personal stories about his dogs was a very creative and refreshing way to relate and reflect on how we manage and view our relationship with God. I also appreciated the focus on a particular book in the Bible throughout. It was a good mix of referencing back to the key points in the Book of James while not getting lost in the scripture. It is very well written and an easy read. I don’t want to say too much and give anything away, so suffice to say I give the book 5 out of 5 stars only because Amazon won’t let me give it a higher rating. Grab this book today!

K Grillo

Better Than Our Dogs

The author whimsically contrasts the serving of our Master with tales of his beloved dogs and the ability to obey, listen, and “stay.” He brilliantly connects verses from the book of James with how we, and man’s best friend, live our everyday lives and figure it out along the way. It’s an easy read for those who may be looking for a little guidance in their lives or anyone who just loves God and dogs! Such a cute spin on life as we live it in our walk with God, and how we should approach things when certain temptations come our way.

Joelle McCullar

Better Than Our Dogs

I absolutely enjoyed the brilliance of this book. It allows for simple and entertaining stories about dogs to translate into our everyday decisions and questions readers whether we are living our best life or being the best person we can be. I found myself laughing and crying throughout the book all while appreciating all of the life lessons it had to offer. It sincerely motivates me to be “Better Than Our Dogs”.

Shelly Palmer

Better Than Our Dogs

The author mixes real life situations with his dogs and scripture beautifully. Lessons on discernment, what it means to take the narrow path, to be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, and to let your light shine by leading by example resonated with me. I often found myself laughing out loud and also tearing up at the life lessons in the book. Being a person that has been given a second chance in life I personally know how important faith is. I loved this book!

Timothy Willey

Better Than Our Dogs

John Murray’s book “Better Than Our Dogs” was a delightful read because it took lessons from the Bible and applied it through an easy to understand subject: Our Dogs. By using past experiences with his dogs, the author was able to show the reader how dogs teach us so much about being more faithful servants of God. I have always struggled reading the Bible and seeing how it applies to every day life. Most of the time I get bogged down by the semantics and hard to understand wording. This book does the job perfectly of breaking down lessons from the Bible and showing us how we can be more obedient, faithful, and loving on our journey with God. From the very beginning I was engaged because it truly painted a picture of how we as humans fail to follow God’s commandments, but how easy it is to get back on the “right” path of living your life with God. Thank you John Murray for showing and reminding me how easy it is to be a child of God. I look forward to the author’s next publication!

S. Myers

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