The more I learn about my dog, the more I uncover lessons about God. In the midst of our move I’ve been watching our pup and her awareness of what’s happening around her. And like my wife’s pregnancy, the dog knows something’s going on, and change is coming, but she can’t really comprehend what it all means.
So amidst the packing, I’ve found another way I’m a lot like my dog.
Everything in the world she’s known is being uprooted. Items pulled out of their places. Boxes being filled. All her normal places to nap or hang out are being disrupted or removed systematically.
And each day she gets a bit more unsettled. This is a dog who truly hates suitcases, so I imagine our packing 100 boxes must seem like Chinese water torture. Her tail dips a bit more, creeping down between her legs. She follows closer, scared that things will turn for the worse. Then, she finds herself even more in the way, and more concerned.
This is the same dog who hates the heat. Loves the snow. Revels in the mountains. Finds wildlife of all sizes to be her obvious playmate and long-lost friend. Essentially, this short haired dog thinks she’s a forest raised husky. She’s up for a good adventure in the outdoors and she’d really like to be let off leash to go explore.
But in her mind this situation is all bad. She has no comprehension of what Park City, Utah has to offer a pup like her. In her mind, she’s being forced into a change. And any decision she didn’t make for herself is bound to be something she will hate.
And just before I really shake my head at her… I stop.
Cause I do that with God. Every time change comes I brace for the worst. If I didn’t choose it for myself, then I know I’ll hate whatever’s next. I never really believe that God would push me reluctantly into something I would actually enjoy.
Yet my dog doesn’t want to risk or step out of her comfort zone. She wants us to stay in Los Angeles. Never leave this rented condo. Never alter her schedule. Stay unchanged because change is bad.
While on the other side of the change is a world she can’t understand, but one her master knows will be so much better.
Ouch. I’m doubting God a lot. I don’t trust my Master’s plan any more than my dog trusts me to move somewhere she’ll like even better.
So my first thought is I should be back on leash. No more of this running around.
Then I have a better thought. Quieter. Stranger. Which means it probably didn’t come from me at all.
Maybe God has had a bunch of things to teach me: about my pride, my cynicism, my trust issues. But he couldn’t tell me directly because I wouldn’t listen. He needed to show me.
What I needed, was a dog. A needy, hyper, intelligent, suspicious furball to fear change so that I can learn that things beyond me can be better, and change can be good.
Makes me wonder what He has in store for me. For us. And what other lessons I’ll learn through my dog.