And there is one thing that is most important for us in this relationship and it's summed up succinctly in one word: Love. God wants us to love Him and our fellow man and when he says fellow man He doesn't just mean those that are family and friends. No, he means all of mankind, including those who would do us harm. And this is difficult to accept because it's just contrary to most human experience. Oh, he doesn't expect us to love what they might do to us, but he does expect us to have forgiveness in our hearts and a willingness to turn a new page. And I guess the major difficulty in this is that it requires us to open ourselves up to the possibility of being hurt and people just don't do this easily. But we must try and we must live and show the strength of our Christianity by the example we set.
Here on my little piece of Heaven I have a small example of how love should work and it comes from my animal family. The two dogs shown in the picture, Kaz, the Great Dane and Max, the Dalmatian, offer a wonderful example of love. Now if any of you have dogs, you know how competitive they are trying to earn your attention and generally the strong wins out in most things. In addition to these two large dogs, one large, the other humongous, I also have four smaller ones. So let's just say that the competition is keen amongst them for attention from both my wife and me.
A sad situation developed which I thought could be a real problem but I have been pleasantly surprised. Max, a loyal family member for over thirteen years, developed terminal cancer. There is nothing we can do to cure him, so we give him daily pain meds and just try to see that he is comfortable. We will keep him with us as long as he is not suffering and he continues to movs about slowly but with great spirit.
Kaz, on the other hand, is young and vibrant and if you've ever been around Great Danes you know that when they move the world moves around them. But Kaz has just picked up on the illness of Max and he acts as if he is his protector. When it's feeding time, he stands back until Max is served first and when choosing the floor beds to sleep on, he always gives Max his option. Just like the picture shows, Kaz sees himself as Max's watchdog. He looks over him and shows concern for him and it offers just a little example to me of how I am supposed to live my life.
God has many ways to send us messages about what he expects. Nature is just one way that we can learn much of His plan if we just slow down and watch. It can be in the beauty of flowers and the fields, in the way a tom turkey tends his flock, how barn cats protect their territory from rodents, or even in these two wonderful dogs and the relationship they have developed.
I don't have all the answers to this but I do know one thing, all of these glories get me in the right spirit for my Sunday worship of my Lord and I thank Him for providing me this wonderful start to my day. Praise His Holy Name.
God bless each of you and have a wonderful Lord's Day in Christ.
Want to read more about the impact animals can have upon our life? Read about my new book on the home page of the website or go to outskirtspress.com/honeyweshouldaboughttheark.