Artwork by Heather Jones
Artwork by Heather Jones
artwork by Heather Jones
Artwork by Heather Jones
I’m home from church this morning. Wow, the things we take for granted. I’ve been muscling through a serious migraine which hit at the tail end of some sort of viral illness, so basically my Spring Break from my day job as a school nurse has been pretty well tanked. Tomorrow I go back to work, I hope. But the church worship team I’m a part of, including my dear bass-player husband, must go on without me. As usual, I’m feeling some twinges of guilt, kind of like the remainders of the migraine, which is in its third day. The “coulda-shoulda’s” try to creep up behind my soul like the subtle but ominous discomfort in the back of my skull. But that’s another whole story.
Suffice it to say, I’m home alone now. Well, not really. Buckley is quite happy that he has company this morning. Normally, he’s home alone at this time on Sunday morning, so he’s feeling pretty okay with this arrangement.
But it’s Sunday morning, so I “could/should” be doing something, you know, Sunday-ish. I’m out of my routine and my element right now. So I tried reading, but got up to take some more migraine medicine after Bob left for church. I’ve prayed, some. Thought I could go out to get a little exercise with the Buck, as that can help the headache, but Bob took the “dog” car, and it’s snowing/raining/sleeting out with gusts up to 30mph, not that Buck would mind at all. This year, March is blowing in like a lion, a very cold lion.
So I sit with my tablet to read—a great book on prayer a might add, by an old guy named Andrew Murray—and Buck decides it’s time for, well, it’s just time for him. First, he sits at my feet and gazes up at me with those big brown eyes. Head strokes and smooches, but evidently that’s not enough. I’m ready now to read, but next up comes the paw, and he has big ones. This is, of course, only the precursor to the whole front half of a 60-pound mutt in my lap, which is not conducive to reading, much less praying. We’ve decided that one of his superhero powers is his irresistible cuteness which draws your attention away from what you should/could (those words again!) be doing. I succumb, not only for his desire for me, but for my desire for him.
As usual, it hits me when I’m not looking for it, that realization that God is trying to show me something despite my best efforts to come up with something on my own:
- God wants us to “bother” Him, to “interrupt” Him. Of course, He probably wouldn’t use those words to describe our coming to Him as such. I am reminded of the non-Jewish woman who reverently but assertively approached Jesus for her child’s healing. At first, Jesus seems to divert her by mentioning something about “throwing the children’s bread to the dogs.” Now c’mon, really. If that had been said in our 21st century hearing, it would have been plastered all over the news media as one of the biggest political gaffs ever! Anti-discrimination suits would abound, effigies would be ignited, sanctions would be imposed…and we would have all missed the point by a long shot. Jesus had no intention of denying this caring mother of what she was so desperately seeking . But He did need for her to see for herself how desperately she wanted it. Was she willing to persist in the face of humility? Was the love for her child more important to her than her own pride? Thank God, the answer to both soul-wrenching questions was a resounding YES. In dog-world, to which she was compared by the Lord Himself, when the one-paw approach was not enough, she went to the “two-paws-in-your-lap” strategy, and the Son of God loved it.
- We are irresistible to God, our Father. Yes, even though Buckley’s adoration of his humans has much to do with providing his food and his fun, it’s apparent that there is something more that sparks his furry love for us. All it takes is for my husband to walk into the room for a thump-thump-thump with the tail to begin, and as we say in our house, “the tail does not lie”. Likewise, even when we come to God from a beginning point of need, that beginning point is accepted and irresistible to Him. Now granted, maturity of relationship demands more than the Santa Claus mentality. Even our dog has learned that, and has learned to enjoy our companionship beyond mere provision. Sometimes this maturity takes an “in-Your-lap” technique, a heart-after-Your-heart attitude, an “I-don’t-care-what-the-final-decision-is-or-how-long-it-takes-just-let-me-be-with-You-no-matter-what” approach. To heaven, such a determination is, well, irresistible.
The March snow is still falling at about a 45 degree angle, and the service at church starts in about sixty seconds. That’s too many numbers for me to deal with right now. Besides, I think I just did what God wanted me to do at this time for this morning. The Buck sleeps peacefully on the floor next to me as the antique school clock hanging on my wall ticks steadily on. It reminds me that school starts again tomorrow, but this morning I have alone-time with God, with both paws in His lap.
Excerpt from God Loves Dogs, by Dawn Jones
#Godlovesdogs #relationship #mutt