Man’s Best Friend
I have given this subject a lot of thought, a subject that sits well with me, but others may not understand it. I want to write about God and dogs, and have done so if you continue reading. There is always a reason for everything, and one of the sayings that always was illusive to me was the saying that a dog is man’s best-friend. I never understood what that meant until I got my very first dog about three years ago. What my dog means to me is something that can’t be explained; he was and is a big part of my life. In this posting, I compare God to my dog... I hope that you are not offended and I hope that you will read through this blog before you judge my theory as a good one or a bad one.
Five Minutes of Fame
One of my best friends and brother to me once always told me about the five minutes of fame. He would always tell me that whenever he would leave his house, even for a couple of minutes, when he came back into his door his dog would be thrilled to see him. He would jump up and come and see how he was, and see if he was OK. He would give him a ton of loving that would make him feel as if he was a celebrity to his dog. That unconditional love that you receive from your dog is unparalleled in feeling, especially when most people do not understand love. No matter how upset, how mad or how miserable you are, your dog is always there to lift you up.
I know that I have read in the scriptures about how thrilled and joyous heaven is when a sinner repents. When a sinner turns from his path and begins to live anew with the Lord, which is one of the greatest joys that are felt by heaven’s host. No matter how long you have turned your back away from God, whenever you come back to Him, He showers you with grace and love—the unconditional grace and love that only God can give, and one of the only creatures that can even come close to offering unconditional love is a dog. No matter what you are feeling, God is waiting. No matter your mood—God loves you.
Waiting and Watching
Every time I have my dog in the vehicle and I walk into the store or wherever, he intently watches where I go. He watches over me and makes sure I am OK. And, when I return, usually he is attentively sitting and watching the door I walked into in the anticipation of my return out of the same door. He waits for me, and when he sees me, he is secure in the fact that I am coming back to the vehicle and that we are going to go somewhere.
It reminds me of the father in the story of the Prodigal son, who when his son left, he waited on the hill. The father waited and watched for his son to return. He knew that he would come back, and he knew that he would be overjoyed when he saw his son coming down the road. How often, and I know I have done this many times in my life, do we stray from the grace of God? I rebel and do what I want to do. I run away from God and try to do everything in my power to live life the way I want—which God allows—and usually I end up being in a worse situation than before. Without God I can do nothing. I, myself, am miserable and sad when I am in a place outside of God’s embrace. The truth is, that I am never outside of God’s loving embrace, but in my mind I am alone, I am miserable and I am heading down a dead end road. I have been so deep in depression that I felt like no one and nothing could pull me out and death was the only solution. The things I was always reminded of was that God is waiting and watching. When I would come home, and I was miserable and sad, my dog would seemingly sense it and would come up to me, lean against me, looking at me with such empathy that I believed that he knew what I was feeling.
Waiting for Me to Come Home
I have had people dog watch for me when I would go out of town for a day, a weekend, a week or two, and I know that when I am gone my dog longs for my return. He is my friend and he is hurting when I am not home. He mopes and is depressed when I am gone for a long period of time. I have even called and spoken to whoever was watching him and they would put me on speakerphone so I could talk to my dog. When he heard my voice, he would lick the phone and be somewhat content that I was OK, even if all he saw was a little black box seemed to have my voice. He remained faithful and true even when I was gone. He anticipated hearing the car door close, or for hearing my voice when I came back into the house. He would never give up that hope that I was coming back.
I know that there were periods of time in my life when I did not want to go to church. I was absent from church, and I know that God wished I was there. God wants us to have a good life. He wants us to have peace and joy. It is true, many people say that they do not need to go to church to have communion with God. They pray in the mountains or near the ocean and that they feel more comfortable with God. They are judged when they go to church by the people around them and that it’s all about the money most times. Whatever you have heard—IT IS TRUE! I really cannot deny that all of those things are false and on many levels they are all true. But the feeling of being in church, and surrounding yourself with similar-minded individuals gives you something you can lean on, something you can count on. We are called to be an army of God. An army consists of more that one. There is power in numbers. There is power in being together and worshiping, for where there are two or more gathered together in my Name, I am their also says the Lord.
God wants us to be safe, and secure in our lives. Even if we are facing our deaths, if we would just cry out and ask him for help He would be there for us. He waits for us to come home, and then He waits for us to come HOME, that place where there are no more tears and suffering. God suffered for us and He still suffers for us when we are lead astray. He wants us to be with Him and is overjoyed when we return. His heart leaps when He hears our voice.
I am very confident when I leave my house knowing that my dog is there. He listens and hears everything. He watches out the window and protects the house. When he is outside and sees people walking by, he raises hell to let us know that someone or something is near. He warns us and others of his presence. Many people think twice about robbing a house guarded by a dog. Many people think twice about attacking the owner of a dog. A dog is relentless; a dog is determined and will die to save the people he loves. Dogs are used as guards, as cops and soldiers.
My wife shared a story with me about a man who was kneeling in prayer, and before him were pictures of his military dogs, bomb sniffing K-9s who in the line of duty, saved his life. They willingly went into danger sniffing out explosives and were killed in the process, and those dogs saved his life as well as others. There are dogs that will drag their owners away from fire if they are unconscious. There are dogs that warn people they are about to have seizures. Dogs can sense many things and will remain loyal to you until the end. There are dogs that when they lose their owner will stand guard over the grave site.
As a Christian, I believe in the presence of God in my life. I have written many papers on spiritual warfare and the inner struggle. I believe that God will do whatever it takes to help us. He watches out for us and goes out before us in battle. He prepares the path and keeps us safe. It is true, we still get killed—accidents do happen. But, it is my understanding that everything happens for the glory of God—even deaths. Many will not agree with me, but God is in my life and I trust that He will take care of me. Even in death, He will be with me walking with me all the way.
We as Christians wear the invincible trophy of the cross around our necks. We believe in its protection and strength. By itself, it is just wood or metal, but the symbol is a symbol of strength and love. God wanted to protect us, and He did what every father fears, He sent His son to die. Through that death, He saved us, He brought us to a place where Satan had no more power and strength. Death was the final victory—and He secured our places in Heaven on the day He was resurrected. He went out before us and allowed Himself to be punished, whipped, spit on and beaten and finally to be nailed on the cross. He protected us from the power of hell and death that day forever.
I know that every time I leave my house I am in God’s hands. He is with me. I do not fear death—but I do fear getting killed. I really do not want to get smashed in my car or fall off a cliff—the process of death is something that everyone fears. No one likes pain and suffering, but the actual finality of death is something I look forward to. I want to go home to heaven. I want to see Christ and those who have gone before. Death has no sting! Death is only the beginning of our lives eternal.
I will always remember the happy day my brothers convinced me to bring my dog home. He was and has been a faithful and true companion. He has loved me unconditionally even when I have yelled and scolded him. He returned to me even when I disciplined him. He constantly reminds me of how good I am. I am not saying that I am a good man; I am saying that he believes that I am. He makes me believe in unconditional love a little bit more. He reminds me of no matter what I do, he will always love me until he or I draw the last breath.
The difference between my God and my dog is great. Obviously, he did not come down from heaven and he was not crucified for me. I know that Christ is truly mans' best friend. Even Christ Himself said what a blessing it was to call someone friend. But I tell you in truth, God provided the dog to remind us how faithful and true HE is. If a simple dog can love a man unconditionally, how much more does God love us? He waits for us to come home to Him. It is His great joy to give us eternal life. I just hope that movie: All Dogs Go to Heaven has some truth to it. I would really like my dog in heaven. I guess I will just have to wait until I go home to see if he is waiting there for me.